Member Spotlight – Lukas and Martin Horejsi

Names: Lukas and Martin Horejsi

Ages: Lukas is 11 and Martin is 49.

How long have you been running together?

Martin: Probably about four or five pairs of shoes ago for Lukas.

How did you start running together?

Martin: We started out riding bikes together ever since Lukas was off training wheels at age two and a half. Then we went for easy runs on trails when Lukas was in kindergarten, and we were doing miles of running by about third grade. Lukas just finished fifth grade and we have already run three half marathons this summer.

How do you maintain your motivation to do the distance?

Lukas: The distance is the motivation.

Martin: For me there is no greater motivator than to be active with your own child. When we are together outdoors, every minute and every mile just flies by. There is just something magical about being exhausted, hungry, tired, hot, and in pain together.

Do you have a favorite run, trail or path?

Lukas: My favorite run is the Pengally Double Dip. For training I love to run on the face and back of Mount Sentinel.

Martin: I love running around Mt. Sentinel and the up Rattlesnake. But my most favorite run is when I’m with Luke. And I agree with Lukas about the Double Dip. For me, however, the Double Dip starts out like a normal run, but quickly turns into a personal adventure, or perhaps survival. My favorite moment in the Pengally was when Lukas was ahead of me and as we crossed paths near the summit of Mt. Sentinel, Lukas ran over to me, hugged me, and told me he loved me. Then rocketed down the trail while I continued slogging my way up. That was truly a high point in my life! A close second when when he said “I love you dad,” as we rounded the final corner of the Missoula Half Marathon and just before he put 15 seconds on me as we crossed the bridge.

What are your interests in addition to running:

Lukas: Swimming, triathlons, soccer, skate skiing, mountain biking, road biking, Youth Track, downhill skiing, paddle boarding, fly fishing, saxophone, and unicycling.

Martin: Mine are exactly the same as Luke’s except for the swimming, triathlons, soccer, youth track, saxophone, and unicycling.

Who are your real life heros?

Lukas: My heros are Steve Prefontaine, Scott Jurek, and Linsey Corbin.

Martin: My running hero is Lukas. He keeps me grounded in what’s most important about running, and he keeps me honest. I’m also a big fan of Dean Karnazes because his books inspired me to do crazy runs. And I’ve never regretted a crazy run.

What accomplishments are you most proud of?

Martin: I’m proud of Lukas’s goal setting and perseverance. I can’t imagine what it would be like if I had Luke’s athletic tenacity when I was his age. Each run and race builds his character on his own terms. As a parent, I am thrilled to support Luke in anything he wants to do.

Is there anything else that you would like the RWM readers to know about you?

Martin: Before we let Lukas run longer distances like 10 miles or more, my wife Kristin and I talked with many experts in athletics and child development. There seemed to be two camps; Camp A that worried about too much too soon causing burnout and maybe joint problems, while Camp B was to let the child do what they want as long as the parent doesn’t push or pressure the child, or be disappointed in their performance. Ever since we moved from Camp A to B, Lukas really matured as an athlete and become a real student of the sports he loves. The personal experiences Lukas gains with each race give him confidence and a positive identity that can never be taken away.

Lukas: I love to run long distance because it’s fun, and even if it hurts, you always have the reward of doing it.

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