Prior to Saturday's U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Marathon in Los Angeles we caught up with Brendan Martin, 26, of Smithton, N.Y. to learn more about his running, how he felt when he learned he had qualified for the Trials, and his life beyond running; including, who he would most like to have lunch with, his role model, and his favorite athlete.
 
This will Brendan’s first Olympic Trials. 
 
So let's GET TO KNOW Brendan a bit better......

How did you start running?
I started running in 9th grade cross country for Smithtown West High School on Long Island

Where did you qualify for the Trials?
My first qualifier was at the California International Marathon in Sacramento, CA in Dec 2014. I ran 2:16:28. I improved my time to 2:15:30 at Grandma's Marathon in June 2015
 
Tell us about the point you realized you had  qualified for the Trials and how it felt:
During CIM I knew I likely had it with about 6 miles to go when I was on qualifying pace and only speeding up from there. I was hurting and trying to move up in the race so I didn't really get excited until I crossed the finish line. It was an amazing feeling, with years of hard work culminating on one morning.
 
High School: 
Smithtown High School West 2007
 
High School Best Times: 
1600m: 4:20
3200m: 9:22
5000m: 15:09
 
High School Highlights: 
Part of indoor Long Island Record setting 4x1mile relay with Dan Frost, Giovanni Signoretti, and Brendan Connell. 17:42.1 for 4x1mile. I finished 5th in State Federation in indoor 3200m run 
 
College: 
Columbia University 2011
 
College Best Times:
14:09 5000m
 
College Highlights: 
Led Columbia to Ivy League conference title in XC in 2009
 
Club/Sponsor:
Brooks and  NYAC
 
Current Coach: 
Corey Kubatzky
 
# of Olympic Trials:
This is my first trials
 
Occupation:
Physical Therapy student at Stony Brook University. HS track coach at Smithtown West. Work part time at Sayville Running company.
 
Something unique about you: 
I feel like I have a unique ability to at least TRY to be friends with everyone. Doesn't always work.. but I try.
 
Favorite Workout: 
Easy 10 miler at Connetquot with Brendan Barrett. Hard days are hard and lonely.
 
Favorite Place to Train:
Sunken Meadow State Park
 
Favorite Food:
NY pizza and sundried tomato in nesconset, specifically.
 
If you could have lunch with one person who would it be?  
Julian Casablancas     
 
Dinner?
My girlfriend, Aubrey
 
Your Role Model:
My parents.
 
Favorite Athlete: 
Currently playing? Matt Harvey of the NY Mets. All-time, Wayne Chrebet. Running? Dick Beardsley and Brian Sell. Sorry, that is 4 athletes.
 
Goal at Trials:
Finish higher than my rank entering the race (32nd among marathon-qualifiers??) a PR would be great if conditions allow but I am really focused on competing and placing as well as I can.

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