By Amit MehtaAthlete Chats


If you are a runner, you know about the Boston Marathon. Most people outside of the running community are familiar with this storied race. On Patriot’s Day in Boston, there is magic in the air. This race means something different to everyone. Read on to hear what the Boston Marathon means to these WAHOO! RUNNING athletes, aka the WAHOO! RUNNING Boston Babes.

Name: Christie Thomas

Age: 48 yrs old

Years Running: 25, 5 Boston Marathons

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: I started WAHOO-ing way back in 1999 in an attempt to keep joy in the sport once I started getting faster. After my best running buddy was killed by lightning in 2001, I searched for a way to honor her and finally did so in 2013 when I launched a kid’s running club called WAHOO! RUNNING. Fast forward a few years, I joined forces with Carlee in 2017 and began coaching adult runners, too. After about a year and a half, we realized more people wanted to be a part of WAHOO! RUNNING than the two of us could possibly coach, so we started an online running community which has been fantastic. There are runners from all over the world who have access to training plans, strength plans, nutrition guidance, race guides, and so much more. The best part of is the support this crew offers one another. We really feel like it is the world’s most supportive running community.

Boston Story: This running of the marathon will be my 5th Boston. I ran 2000, 2001, 2002, and 2018 ? ❄️. In 2002, I set my marathon PR of 3:23.

Goal for Boston: Absorb all of the energy, meet all of the runners, and cheer like a mad woman for my buddies who are running the BAA 5K. My goal for the race is to run a 3:22:59. I want to beat 32-yo me. It’s going to take some grit, but I know I have that.

Hurdles: I just bumped up against my first one. My right hip flexor is not happy, so I’m heading to our favorite performance therapist so he can work his magic. Fingers crossed!

What does the Boston Marathon mean to me: The Boston Marathon makes me feel like an elite athlete. I love that I earned the right to toe the line. I wasn’t lucky, I was gritty.

Name: Carlee Daub

Age: 29 yrs old

Years Running: 7, 10 marathons

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: Christie and I became co-owners of WAHOO! RUNNING in 2017. At this time, we made a push into the adult coaching arena. We began coaching athletes from around the US for half marathons and marathons. We had success in this area, but we realized people were attracted to the community aspect of what we do. We asked ourselves the question, “How can we share the specialness of WAHOO! RUNNING with the masses?” Our answer was starting an online community. In January 2019, we launched our online platform. This gave us the opportunity to bring people together. Our network caters to every type of athlete from walkers who are new to the sport to the speedy ones who are pursuing BQ’s and OTQ’s.

Boston Story: Boston is a dream of mine, and for about one hour after the California International Marathon last year, I thought I had finally qualified. Sadly, the official result was that I missed it by .03 seconds! Talk about devastating! This near miss made me hungry for another opportunity to BQ. Follow along as I give it another go this April at the OKC Memorial Marathon.

Hurdles: When you are trying to do something you have never done before, there are always obstacles, whether it be missing Boston by .03 seconds, injury, or sickness. I’ve learned is to embrace these and know they make me stronger. This is all part of the process.

What does the Boston Marathon mean to me: I never truly understood the significance of the Boston Marathon until I traveled to Boston last year and watched it in person. That day changed my life, and now, all I want to do is qualify and run this historic event.

Name: Deana Nelson

Age: 54 yrs old

Years Running: 30 +/- yrs. of running

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: I met Christie, when I was easing towards marathon retirement and training for NYC marathon. I then met Carlee, on her very first run here in Oklahoma, where we bonded over both playing college volleyball and feeling like landlocked salmon in Oklahoma (she’s a West Coast gal, I’m an East Coast gal) . The JOY & fun these two women and the WAHOO! Running community have brought to this sport are the reason I am marathoning again and loving every minute of it…mostly, sometimes Track Tuesday still get me!

Boston Story: I have qualified many times, but have only run once, in 2002. That year, due to medication I took to prevent me going to the bathroom, I finished by literally crawling across the finish line.

Goal for Boston: To RUN across that finish line this time, and not need a wheelchair ride. Of course, I’d also like to re-qualify for Boston at Boston.

Hurdles: I suffered my first stress fracture last fall, so I do not have the base under me I’d really like going into Boston, but I am determined to make the best of it.

What does the Boston Marathon mean to me: Boston, to me, is like the Olympics for amateur athletes.  I let my Olympic dreams go, but baby, I still have Boston.

Name: Lisa Braden

Age: 37 yrs old

Years Running: 20 years

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: I met The WAHOO girls through their kids running club. They courted me to run with them, I hesitantly agreed to a Saturday morning run, and the rest is history. We have traveled from coast to coast running marathons together. I think my solo running days are behind me. With WAHOO! by my side, I’m a stronger runner and person.

Boston Story: I am new to marathoning, so my journey to Boston is young.  My second marathon gave me a qualifying time, but I fell in the 4 min and 52 second window and did not get into the race.  But seriously, what kind of fun would it be if I got in on my second try? You gonna earn that baby and you better believe I am going to earn it.

Goals for Boston: Cheer my heart out and have a ton of fun.  Boston is like my Olympics, and I want to soak in every moment.

What does Boston mean to me: Boston challenges me to dream big dreams. A BQ is very attainable with faith and hard work.

Name: Jessica Lilke (Jess)

Age: 43 yrs of Awesomeness

Years Running: 10 (14 marathons, 5 ultras)

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: The best happenstance meeting ever at OrangeTheory Fitness.  I met a few WAHOO! gals and they sent Carlee out to “find me.” That meeting sparked the running bug in me again.  I had taken some time off because I no longer felt joy in running…WAHOO! helped me find joy again in a big way!

Boston Story: Boston has NEVER been a thought in my mind, until WAHOO! RUNNING & all that WAHOO! means (joy, support, friendship, grit) made me think “maybe just maybe.”

Hurdles: My biggest hurdle is getting out of my own head & believing I can actually run…that I am a runner.

Goals for Boston: To be the absolute best cheerleader & support crew for all the runners! I want to absorb and experience the energy of the Boston Marathon.

What does the Boston Marathon mean to me: The Boston Marathon means goals being set, goals being crushed, big chances being taken, pushing limits, and being fierce in all things. Boston Magic has to be real!

Name: Hillary Brodeur

Age: 31 yrs old

Years running: 10-ish years

Relationship to WAHOO! RUNNING: I went to college with Carlee and was inspired by the creation of WAHOO! and the opportunity to take my running to the next level.

Boston Story: I never say never, but I’m not sure I thought I’d ever be tempted to run a marathon. After moving to Boston 4 years ago and joining Wahoo! this year, I’m starting to feel the tingle in my toes to see what’s possible! Boston 20??

Boston Goals: My primary goal is to be the loudest and proudest WAHOO! cheerleader for my team and for all of the runners.

What does the Boston Marathon mean to me: The Boston Marathon is a beacon of light that I run towards with every day and every mile! Wahoo! ?


Here’s a little history of our company and who we are here at WAHOO! RUNNING, which is extremely personal and rich in meaning.

WAHOO Founders – Carlee & Christie

On July 7, 2001, a late afternoon thunderstorms rolled into Houston like it always does during those humid summer months. Christie’s best friend and running buddy, Meredith Thompson, went outside to watch the storm and pull a few weeds. This was the last decision she would ever make. In a freak accident, a bolt of lightning struck her in the chest. She died later that night at the hospital. As you can imagine, this was a life changing moment for many who were close to her. Here is the news story about her tragic death.

It took Christie 12 years to figure out a way to honor Meredith, but she finally did it by combining her zest for life (WAHOO!) and her passion for running (RUNNING). She honored her by starting a kids running club called WAHOO! RUNNING. To us, WAHOO! was an expression of joy and excitement. Meredith and Christie started WAHOO!-ing during races when we came upon a crowd of spectators. This enthusiastic expression got the crowd excited and gave us a spark of energy during the race. WAHOO! became our thing and seemed like the perfect name for Christie’s kids club.

For several years, we operated solely as a kids running club. In August 2017, Carlee & Christie established WAHOO! Running as an LLC and began coaching adult runners. On January 1, 2019, they launched an online running community through Mighty Networks. This community is designed to connect, inspire, train, and inform runners. We want our athletes to find joy in running, work hard, but never outrun the joy of this sport. This community is our passion. We want to build a worldwide community of WAHOO! Runners.


Go to For a small monthly fee of $20 or an annual fee of $200 (that’s 12 months for the price of 10), you can not only be a part of the world’s most supportive running community, but you gain access to training plans, nutrition info, strength training, and so much more. We are a one-stop shop for all things running. #comerunwithus #thisiswahoo

Authors: Wahoo! Running Athletes

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