Meet RUNColumbus team member Teresa (TJ) Poliquin. TJ is supported by her “awesome hubby of 19 years, Chris.” Chris and TJ met as teammates on their college track team in Indiana before dating and getting married a few years later and moving to Ohio. Chris was a sprinter at the time, but TJ slowly converted him to her fun and challenging love of distance running. Chris doesn’t run anymore due to knee issues, but he is TJ’s best cheerleader! The couple has always had dogs. Currently, they enjoy walking and running their fur babies and twin sisters, Luna and Selene.
TJ ended 2021 with a bang completing (and winning!) her first 100 miler on the trails. After taking a mini-break from running and gaining too much weight when 2022 rolled in, Patty and Ladd (other RUNColumbus team members) persuaded TJ to join in on the fun of this series. I thought I could use a fun and enticing way to enjoy competitive road racing and shorter distances again. TJ says: “Thanks for roping me in friends!”
Why/when did you start running? I started running when I was 8. It was mainly to hang out with friends and be able to take “vacations” across the US while I was on a traveling AAU track team. I fell in love with the sport and competed on all my track and XC school teams until I graduated college. I hit burnout at that time, but I got back into running after a 2-year hiatus and missing the competition, community, and camaraderie of the sport and racing. Since then, I’ve never stopped with the lifelong obsession.
What is your favorite aspect(s) of running? My favorite part of running is the friendships made and watching them achieve their goals. I love how it brings out the grit and determination in people. It’s especially amazing to follow and be a part of someone’s journey from when they take their first step into training for a race and seeing them cross the finish line for the first time. You can see the moment when they realize all their hard work paid off! It’s also rewarding and fun to run with others who pull you out of your comfort zone to help you reach your own goals. Sometimes you just can’t do it on your own! Kim Hansen has been my extra push in this particular series. Thanks girl!
What excites you about being part of the RUNColumbus Race Series and Team? The camaraderie, supportive community, and meeting new friends totally excites me about this series! I love seeing familiar faces at races and getting to know different people at each one too. This group helped me stay motivated through the worst of the winter months as I started the series off with the Frigid 5ks in January. I felt more comfortable during the following races knowing others in this group were out there with me. We push each other to do our best at every event and cheer each other on through the finish. Such a fantastic support group! Keep up the great work Brandon, Sarah, Phil, Erica, Derek, and all the other wonderful participants I am still looking forward to meeting!