It's one thing when people encourage you to write a book. It's another thing to do it. And have a full-time job. And serve as a Navy Reserve Officer. Booz Allen Associate Dana Ayers has checked all of these off her to do list—and she's not done.
Her book, "Confessions of an Unlikely Runner: A Guide to Racing and Obstacle Courses for the Averagely Fit and Halfway Dedicated," details her experiences—both humorous and inspirational—in recreational races.
As the book's title suggests, Dana, now in her 30s, didn't grow up running. Former President George W. Bush, an avid runner, inspired her to start. She began her professional career as a political appointee for the president, and while she was working at the White House, he created a staff-only 5k. shortly after, Dana was hooked on running. "It became a social thing to run races," she said.
Dana began squeezing in marathons, trail runs, and obstacle courses. Today, she continues to run, while juggling her day job leading communications efforts for cybersecurity education and awareness at the Department of Homeland Security as well as her duties as a Navy Reserve public affairs officer.
Despite her fervor for running, Dana clung to her identity as an unlikely athlete and competitor.
"I'm slow, I don't look like a 'real' runner and sometimes I may not train as much as I should, but I'm still out there enjoying the sport," she says. Dana finished her first marathon in five and a half hours, happy to finish among the "back of the pack."