- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 14, 2004

Unless you are a woman past 40, you probably never heard of More Magazine.

Nor did I until last year, when the glossy monthly publication stepped to the plate to sponsor a marathon for the very population it serves: the mature woman.

The number of entries for the inaugural More Marathon is validation that this is an idea whose time has come. More than 500 women 40 and older will line up in New York City’s Central Park next Sunday for the first race totally dedicated to them.

“I don’t know where I heard of the More Marathon,” said Cathy Van Brocklin, 57, of Gaithersburg. “I thought that would be really nice, all those older women. The camaraderie and all.”

Quite a few women from the Washington metropolitan area have registered for the marathon and the accompanying half-marathon, where two women team up.

Other area entrants include Maryida Klimowicz (Arlington), Felice Laird (Bethesda), Joanne Zujewski (Bethesda), Brenda Murray (Chevy Chase), Dane Beyer (Chevy Chase) and Maria Teresa Gomez (Gaithersburg).

“She is pretty representative of the kind of woman — professional, dedicated to running, pretty competitive — who we are finding are coming out for this first-time event,” an official from the sponsoring New York Road Runners Club said of Van Brocklin.

Van Brocklin is an information processor for a law firm who has worked “odd shifts” for nearly two decades. She started running in her 30s, along with her first husband, when they lived in Madison, Wis. But when Van Brocklin returned to the Washington area, she said, she lost interest in her running while having four children in 10 years.

“When my youngest was 2, I got this great idea to walk, then it went to running,” she said. That was 14 years ago. Van Brocklin boasts an injury-free career, adding that she is “waiting for something to break down. Maybe it’s because I have never pushed my limits.”

She has, however, run many marathons in the past four years. The More Marathon and the Frederick Marathon on May2 will bring her total to 11.

Van Brocklin voiced some concern about the course at the More Marathon, which includes five loops in Central Park, reminiscent of the humble beginnings of the now world-famous New York City Marathon back in the 1970s.

“Doing loops really drives me nuts,” she said. “But the spirit of the whole thing will be so high that I hope I won’t notice. I’m probably more excited about this race than most others.”

Her ultimate goal in her running life is to qualify for the Boston Marathon, which would take a time of 4 hours, 15 minutes or faster.

“My best time is a 4:17 at Baltimore last year.” she said. “I was 2 minutes shy. I came close, but at mile 23, I stopped and took off my shoes and socks and that cost me the 2 minutes.”

And after she completes the More Marathon next week, Van Brocklin most likely will feel the same way she has felt in her previous marathons.

“When you go into labor, you go, ‘Oh my God, what did I do?’” she said. “Then, like with the marathon, you think, ‘What stupid thing did I just do?’ Then a month later, you start thinking about doing the next one, you start looking at race brochures.”

Go south, young Mays — The area running scene soon will lose Glen Mays of the District. The 33-year-old health-care researcher will move to Little Rock, Ark., in two months to join the faculty of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

Like the true distance runner he is, Mays entered the hilly March7 Little Rock Marathon to explore the city in advance of a house-hunting stint and won the second annual event, outracing 2,600 entrants, in 2:34:30. It was Mays’ fourth marathon.

No word on whether he has put down a contract on a new home.

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