Welcome to a new Sunday series that will be a bit like a fireside chat. I count it a privilege to be a part of an amazing group of Travel bloggers here at BoardingArea.com. But just how well do you know “your” BoardingArea writers? Are you reading all the blogs you should be each day? This series will help you get to know them one by one. Now on to this week’s chat.
If you have been following BoardingArea over the years, you have been seeing some big changes as of late. From a small place with a few bloggers to now an ever expanding group of focused bloggers who cover such a wide variety of topics. Not just in one part of the world, but worldwide. If you are into exercise and points, Running with Miles is a blog for you. Let’s sit down and get to know Charlie, the mind behind the blog!
Rene – Hi Charlie, it is great to sit down and get to know you a bit better! Running with Miles – that is different. Your blog seems straight forward until we spend some time on the blog, then we see all the places you have been and so much more. Tell us, why did you start blogging and how did you end up calling BoardingArea your home.
Charlie – Hi, Rene, and thanks for having me here! I started blogging a couple of years ago because I was consistently meeting other runners at marathons across the country that were surprised that I had been able to get there for free, or at least with minimal cash outlay. Running surveys suggest that marathoners who travel for races spend about $3,000 a year in travel costs. My goal was to help fellow runners get that way down. So, I started writing to direct them to one place that would be specifically for them.
As for why I came to BoardingArea, I talked to Randy a number of months ago about the possibility for two reasons – 1) I was not getting the type of reach for fellow runners/travelers that I was wanting to have and 2) I thought I could fit an interesting niche here at BA. With so many people traveling for business all the time, it is important to try and stay fit or at least try some workouts on the road. I hope to help with that!
Rene – I hear that so many times from travel enthusiasts that they love to travel and do what they love, but without all the tips from bloggers like yourself they could never do it affordably! I see that you run all over the world. Tell me, do you tend to fly on one alliance and stay at one hotel chain or are you covering the whole spectrum when it comes to travel?
Charlie – For the first few years of my running, I flew Delta (I was a charter Diamond Medallion) almost exclusively. I really love the airline itself (plug for Delta Points!) and enjoyed the customer service experience I had with them. As for hotels, I normally went with SPG due to the amount of Westins that were associated or closely located to race sites. Lately, I have been more involved with Star Alliance due to more international travel. As for hotels, I still like SPG but have begun to use some more Hilton (because of the reach of their hotels around the world) and Club Carlson (perfect for two night stays!). This year alone, I have been able to fly with about 8 or 9 different airlines to reach my various races so it has been fun!
Rene – Well I have to agree with all the Delta stuff, but neat to see what points can offer runners like yourself! Running seems to be a tight group but I can see your blog appealing to anyone athletic and who enjoys the outdoors. Does your blog cover more about the events, places and such than say the caviar and champagne in 1st class (and is it all about 1st or about the where you are going to that is with Running with Miles)?
Charlie – I try to focus mostly on travel and tips that will help runners but there is so much that is happening with points and miles so sometimes I write more widely as well. I do like to focus on what and where miles and points can get the runner. To me, it is definitely about the destination more than the journey. In fact, my biggest running event to date took place with me flying 45,000 miles in one week – IN COACH! I had set out to run 6 solo marathon distances (26.2 miles) on 6 continents in 5 days and all the travel happened in coach. 🙂 It wasn’t until after that trip that I really began to enjoy more of the first class travel. However, it is nice to be able to help people gather the miles/status necessary to have more legroom before the big race day (and for after the race as well!).
Rene – Great! I know I need to focus more on my size (it would be great to feel sorta comfortable in coach seat so I gotta read Running with Miles more to be inspired)! So what can we look forward to from Charlie in 2014 and what is on “course” next?
Charlie – I know one thing – we can all work on increasing our fitness to some degree! It is interesting that you say that about the inspiration, though. For 2014, I am looking to help more travelers work walking and running into their routines. So many times, the only running that occurs for us travelers is the rush to the gate at the airport! 🙂 I am hoping that I can use Running with Miles to encourage travelers to become more active. Running is very healthy as it improves many of our essential bodily functions. It is also an incredibly competitive sport for each person – by that I mean that I compete against myself primarily every time I line up for a race. It is great to push ourselves a bit more anyway we can!
As for the actual running, I am starting out 2014 by running the Dubai Marathon in January and working really hard at setting a PR (personal record) there. After that, I am headed to Israel for the Tel Aviv Marathon in February and back to Israel for the Jerusalem Marathon in March. After that, I will be hitting my hometown, Rochester, NY, to try and improve my 12 hour distance. I am really looking forward to capturing each event in a way that will encourage other runners to visit those places as well as introduce some other races all over the world. After that, who knows!
Rene – WOW! I cannot wait to follow you and read about all you have to share along the journey! Thanks Charlie so much for taking the time to sit down with me and getting to know one of BoardingArea’s newest star bloggers!
Charlie – Thank you, Rene, for having me here today. I really appreciate the opportunity to share a little about Running with Miles with your readers and hope to see them and you at some event down the road! Thanks so much!
Be sure to follow Charlie’s blog on BoardingArea as well as run along Facebook, Twitter and Google+. You can reach out via email as well. Be sure to check back next week to meet another of “your” BoardingArea bloggers face to face! – René
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