Running on Humor

interview by Jeffrey Martin


SPORT Track and field, middle distance runner, Team U.S.A.
HOMETOWN Norwich, VT
AGE 28

2016_May-June_1859_Athlete_Andrew-Wheating_002When you hear “Rio,” what pops into your head?

Honestly? Brazilian dancers. What would an Olympic medal mean? It would be the cherry on the top of the cupcake that has a bunch of bites in it.

If you could only run one race from here on out, what would it be?

Probably the 800. I like the mile. I like the 1,500 a lot. But there is something about the 800. There is less thinking involved. You have time to make one decision—if it works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.

You’re a native New Englander living in Eugene. What keeps you here?

It’s community; it’s training facilities; and it’s the University of Oregon, but I could love it anywhere. Eugene has a lust for running that keeps you motivated on those harder days. I see others running, and it motivates me to get out the door.

Your social media presence is entertaining.

(@AndrewWheating: I kind of hope someone tries to steal something from me, because that would be the chase of a lifetime.) I wish I could I say it’s just in the moment that I tweet, but most of them start with a thought and then I’ll rewrite it and tweak it. Thirty minutes later, I’ll be like, ‘There it is—that’s the tweet.’ And then I’ll send it. I have a huge passion for videography and film. I try to put together these fun, stupid packages and put them out. Sure, it may look like I’m wasting time, but every runner needs a hobby. That’s mine.

So it begs the question: How brand aware are you, then?

As athletes, a lot of us don’t have marketing teams or brand managers. So, we market ourselves, make ourselves valuable to companies. I want to be more than just a body running around a track. I want more meat on the bone. Adding humor—it’s a huge aspect of my life—so I figure my brand must have humor and laughter.

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