Logan Barrett bested nearly 4,000 others at the Chick-fil-A 5K Fitness Classic race in downtown Louisville, March 7.
Barrett, a contract specialist with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District, beat the next runner by nearly 30 seconds.
He finished at 14:48 in the first race of the Chick-fil-A Louisville Triple Crown of Running℠, setting a smooth pace of 4:46 per mile.
“It is a well-designed race series that works great with people training for a long race like the 15k or even moving to a half marathon later in the season,” Barrett said.
Barrett did base mile training – easy running on a daily basis. Beginning in late January, he incorporated hill training and tempo workouts.
“I was putting in around 60 -75 miles a week. In the weeks leading up to my first race of the spring season, I (transitioned) to track workouts to start developing leg turnover (speed),” Barrett said. “My plan was to compete in all the Triple Crown races and focus on the Indy Mini at the beginning of May.”
The Triple Crown consists of a 5K, 10K and 15K; while the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is a 13.1 mile course, starting and finishing in downtown Indianapolis and includes a lap around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s famed 2.5 mile oval track.
Like so many other athletes whose season has been cut short by the COVID -19 pandemic, Barrett only completed one of his four races before being sidelined.
Barrett, who has been running since sixth grade, made a whim decision to join the cross country team.
“It didn’t take me long to figure out how much I liked running. I went on to run cross country and track in high school, where I competed at multiple state championships,” Barrett said. “My high school success led to a scholarship to run at the collegiate level, and that momentum carried me to multiple conferences and national championships.”
Early success spurred Barrett to keep competing, but it’s the people he’s encountered along the way who keep him running. “I love the sport dearly. (It’s) the people I’ve met and continue to meet who drive me to stay with it.”
Barrett said some of those relationships are by design and meant to drive him to be faster.
“I joined the Long Distance Project, a running club started by Dave Long, an Olympic marathoner for Great Britain. We have about 35 people in the club, (in) which all running levels are welcomed,” Barrett said. “We strive to better each other and our community by meeting weekly for runs and hosting team events at local businesses.”
With the COVID-19 physical distancing mandate, the club has cancelled all group runs; however, the use of social media and running apps, helps them to bridge the gap.
“The new normal might be a burden, but it isn’t a show stopper,” Barrett said. “We are definitely making the best of the situation.”
According to Barrett relationships aren’t the only benefit to running. The health benefits to running are great for the body, but it’s not all just physical. Mental wellness is just as important.
“I value both equally. Stress is a part of everyone’s life, whether it is work related or personal. Finding a way to relieve that stress is extremely important in a healthy life balance,” Barrett said. “I enjoy the physical challenge of running, the mental relief, and cherish the friends I meet along the way.”