In 2005, two years after joining the Army, Staff Sgt. Amy Frederick ran her first marathon and she’s never looked back. The anti-terrorism instructor is what many of us would call a running fanatic and she’s definitely okay with that title.
“I initially started running because I liked to eat a lot and it made me feel less guilty about that, but it was also something that I was really good at. It helps clear my mind and I feel really good afterwards,” said Frederick.
During her 2011 deployment to Iraq she participated in a few half marathons, but ran marathon distances on her own as training runs. When she returned, she set a goal to run a marathon in every state before she retires. So far, she has run races in 43 states and she has plans to run marathons in North Dakota, Minnesota, and Utah in the coming months.
After completing those three races, SSG Frederick will need to run in Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Maine to complete her goal.
“I travel a lot for work, so I’m always trying to fit in a marathon in or near the places I’m traveling to. I’ve been lucky enough to have a really supportive chain of command and I appreciate how helpful they’ve been in helping me achieve my goal,” said Frederick.
SSG Frederick has definitely had a few setbacks along the way. In 2008, she tore her ACL and meniscus in her knee and in 2016, she fractured her tibia on an obstacle course. During her recovery when she couldn’t run, she took to swimming, biking, and rowing to keep herself in shape. She also continues to mix in upper body training to stay in shape for the Army.
When she experienced both injuries, SSG Frederick found strength and inspiration from the wounded warrior and amputees who continue to push themselves mentally and physically. In fact, one of her most favorite races was the Bataan Memorial Death March.
“The entire Bataan experience was incredible. You’re able to meet survivors and there are so many wounded warriors there completing the race. It is very inspiring and it motivates you to keep pushing yourself,” said Frederick.
SSG Frederick has also had the opportunity to run the Boston Marathon. She ran as part of the Run for the Fallen charity and was able to meet the family of the fallen Soldier she was running for.
She continues to find running a great pastime and enjoys the camaraderie of groups like Team RWB. She also recommends running groups to those who are just starting to dabble in distance running, as they can help motivate you and provide the support you need to reach your goals.
We hope to do a follow-up article on SSG Frederick once she has reached her goal of running in all 50 states. Stay tuned for an updated article in the Dragoon and on our MPRA blog.