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I just wanted to run with my father

Name: Wesley Paul
Born: January 25, 1969
Occupation: Attorney
Residence: New York, NY

I lived my first four years with my grandparents in Taiwan. When I finally joined my father, he was attending St. Johns University in New York. Dad started running at the track to lose weight. I'd tag along to be with him. It was a challenge to keep up at first, but we both started getting better.

So my motivation was, I just wanted to run with my father.

We moved to the Midwest. I ran a couple of races. Dad decided to enter the Heart of America Marathon, so it was a matter of me tagging along again. We never measured miles. We'd just go out and run for 60 or 90 minutes. We finished together in 4:04. I was age seven.

Within a few years, I was breaking 3 hours and setting age-group records. They wrote a children's book about me, Wesley Paul: Marathon Runner. My fastest time was 2:38 in the Houston Marathon at age 15, but it was never a matter of competing with others. Running was more a fun exercise, an outlet for my energy. I liked pushing myself and the mental discipline that went with it.

I suffered some injuries, so shifted my attention more to academics, but I never stopped running. While a freshman at Harvard, I decided it might be fun to run the Boston Marathon, so I jumped in without a number and ran an unofficial 2:32.

Exercise remains an important part of my life. I start each day by running two to five miles. It helps me be more productive. I have one daughter, three-and-a-half years old. Maybe in another year or so, I'll take her with me to the track.

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