New year, new Beasts! Entering into it’s third year, the Brooks Beast Track Club focuses on middle-distance track runners. Today, Dorian Ulrey and Matt Hillenbrand join the Beasts and contribute a number of strengths to the team’s growing middle-distance arsenal.
The nature of the Beasts is fast and these newest recruits will fit right in with the local Seattle track club. Dorian was a USA Team Member in 2009. His personal bests are 1:48.81 in the 800 meters, 3:35.23 in the 1500 meters, and 3:55.52 in the mile. Matt, a recent college graduate of University of Kentucky, comes to the Beasts with personal bests of 1:48.07 in the 800 meters, 3:39.84 1500 meters, 3:57.00 in the mile, and 13:49.24 in the 5k.
Stats aside, we sat down with Dorian and Matt to get to know them and learn about their run happy philosophy!
1.) What drew you to the Brooks Beast Track Club?
Matt: I was initially drawn to the Brooks Beasts because of the focus that is placed on the team. I run best when I am in a positive environment; what better way to do that than to be with a “RUN HAPPY” company like Brooks.
2.) If you could runcation anywhere in the world, where would you want to go?
Dorian: Australia! Amazing weather, amazing trails, and amazing scenery!
Matt: I think if I could runcation anywhere in the world, it would have to be St. Moritz in Switzerland. I have been told it’s a one of a kind place to train. Similar to most great training bases, it is at about 6,000 ft. and has quick access to running trails while located in the Swiss Alps.
3.) What is your favorite workout?
Dorian: Repeat 300s. I guess this means I am still truly a miler.
Matt: Easy. I love doing The Michigan workout; it’s a great mixture of my strong suits. It consists of running a ladder of Mile,1200,800,400 with tempo miles in between each rep. It’s one of those workouts that if you do it well, you can gain a lot of confidence and feel ready for your next big race!
4.) Tell us your go-to pre-race meal and pump up jam.
Dorian: My go-to pre-race meal is usually lasagna and a Caesar salad. The pre-race jam is really any late 90’s/ early 00’s rap. That stuff gets me ready to roll in a hurry!
Matt: If I had a meal I prefer to eat before a race, it’s probably a hearty omelet from IHOP, some fruit and maybe a granola bar. As far as pump up jams, I have a playlist that I listen to before each race. It starts with some Taylor Swift, Jack Johnson, Foo Fighters and ends with some Dance Gavin Dance to get me pumped up.
5.) How do you calm your nerves before a big race?
Dorian: Usually before a race I try to say good luck to the fellow competitors standing next to me on the starting line. This almost always helps to calm the nerves.
Matt: I think the best way for me to stay calm is to talk to my teammates or coaches before a race. The night before a meet I usually go over the game plan for the race and brush up on it the next morning, but when I leave for my race I usually just find other ways not to think about it. Sometimes I just prefer to listen to music to get in the zone but it’s also nice to just talk with others about things that have nothing to do with the race.
6.) What is your primary goal for the 2015 season?
Dorian: Making the world championship team in the 1500. I took third place at the last USA championships I ran while 100% healthy, so I’m looking to get back to that level.
Matt: My primary goal for the 2015 season is to be able to represent Team USA. For me, it’s a goal that includes enjoying the process of training. For it to happen, I am going to have to train smart, stay healthy, run fast and enjoy the little things along the way. I think that the help and support of Brooks and the Brooks Beasts Track Club, the sky is the limit for my career as a Brooks athlete!
Welcome aboard Dorian and Matt! We can’t wait to see you lace up your spikes and run the oval!