OXNARD, Calif. — Joshua and Lori (Hamilton) Sharp, married since 2008, have qualified and will be running in this year’s Boston Marathon.
Joshua, 35, is the son of Cyrus and Rose Sharp, Benton, Kentucky, and Lori Hamilton Sharp, 31, is the daughter of Randy and Marceena Hamilton, Alcoa, Tennessee, and formerly of Greenville, Ohio. She is the granddaughter of Betty Brodrick, the late Robert Brodrick and the late Lowell and Phyllis Hamilton, all of Greenville.
Joshua and Lori met and started dating in college at Murray State University, Murray, Kentucky, where he received his degree in graphics communications management and also a degree in nursing. She received her degree in music education, is currently seeking her master’s degree and is also a certified Crossfit trainer. She is an outdoor hiking instructor and works at REI, a sporting goods store.
Nearly all of their time is spent training and running. Joshua began running in 2011 in the L.A. Marathon and Lori began with the Walt Disney Marathon in Florida in 2013. This will be the third time for Joshua to run in Boston and the first for Lori.
During the last five years, they have run many marathons in several different states and have received many medals for their achievements. The Sharps live in Oxnard, California, and will make the trip for the April 17 marathon to fulfill a dream come true, running together in Boston.
The Boston Marathon course is 26 miles, 385 yards long, running through winding roads and city streets. The average finish time is just over four hours. Qualifying for Boston is done by strict guidelines and a runner can be eliminated by only hundredths of a second in their age group. Only about 10 percent of American runners are fast enough to qualify.
Training for the marathon takes many months and includes not only running but also training for strength, stamina and strict dietary planning called “nutrient timing.” Carbs and proteins are planned before long runs and workouts to get the most out of what those foods provide.
“It’s pretty amazing that two college sweethearts, from different areas of the country, would marry and both qualify for the most prestigious marathon in the world,” said her mother, who lived in Greenville until 1975, then returned in the late 1980s and then moved away again in 1993.