Ward, who earned a spot on the U.S. marathon team in February, told Runner’s World magazine that he never runs on Sunday because of his Mormon faith and that he took the tortoise’s path to success.
“Ever since high school, where I only ran 40 miles a week, I’ve focused on making incremental improvements in my running. Every season, and every year, I try just to run a little more, a little harder and a little faster,” Ward told Amby Burfoot of Runner’s World.
At the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August, Ward will join two marquee names on the marathon course: Galen Rupp and Meb Keflezigh, who have both been in the Olympics before.
Ward, however, had an edge on his teammates in at least one area: He is a statistician whose master’s thesis at Brigham Young University was titled “Optimal Pace Strategy in a Marathon.”