East Nasty of the Week: Daniel Hudgins

When it comes to running, this new East Nasty of the Week is a machine! But what is even more impressive is that he really has only been taking this stuff seriously since 2009. When you read about all that he has done and wants to do with running, I imagine that you too will be amazed. Welcome our newest ENOW, Daniel Hudgins.

This is what it looks like when Daniel runs

Daniel was born in the metropolis of Centerville, TN. Sure it may only be a population of about 3,700, but the legendary Minnie Pearl is from there, so that is something to definitely brag about. Also, his town now holds the annual National Banana Pudding Festival, which has its own website and everything¸ http://bananapuddingfest.org.

Throughout his middle school and high school years, Daniel focused on the academics. He won a district spelling bee in the 7th grade, and was on the quiz bowl team in 8th. By his senior year his fellow classmates could easily recognize the potential leader that he would soon become and elected him class president. His non-athleticism had a negative impact on his weight however, as he weighed a good 50 to 60 pounds more than he does today.

For college Daniel attended Lipscomb University. He began with a major in Engineering, but later switched it to Information Systems. While in college he joined the Lipscomb A Capella Singers and went on several mission trips. In 2006, he and some of his classmates went to Honduras and built 15 houses. The next year, during his spring break, he helped tutor and teach kids in the Bronx of New York City. In the summer of 2007, Daniel took a mission trip to an orphanage in Ghana, West Africa. Since then he has gone back to visit with the kids and staff two additional times, and is planning to head there again this year!

In 2005 Daniel decided to give running a try. He signed up for a 5K with the only goal of beating 30 minutes. He did and finished with a respectable 29:30 for a first timer. For some reason however, running did not stick with him, at least for the next four years. In 2009, he decided to get serious about training and run the Virginia Beach Half Marathon. His training worked this time, and he finished in 2:19. Since then, it has been a constant training schedule for a variety of races.

His first race in 2005

For a living, Daniel has three jobs really. The first (the main one) is working IT for a healthcare company called Amsurg. He also helps with timing races for I Run for the Party. Finally, he helps raise money for some of the big races he participates in each year. This year, Daniel has joined the Team in Training group to raise money for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. His goal is to reach $2000 before he runs the Country Music Marathon this April. He has a website for donations HERE. Be sure to go and check it out.

Daniel’s biggest success story in running came a year after his first Virginia Beach half in 2009. In 2010 he returned to the race and shaved off a cool 35 minutes from his time, ending at 1:44! He attributes a good amount of that race to training with East Nasties.

Besides raising money for charity, going on mission trips, and basically doing way more good in this world than 5 to 10 of us combined, Daniel is also starting to compete in triathlons. He is going to even complete a half Ironman this year.

Good luck Daniel in all your running goals this year. We East Nasties will be cheering you on!


9 Responses to East Nasty of the Week: Daniel Hudgins

  1. Chuck says:

    Danie, congratulations on your selection as ENOW. However I can’t help but look at this picture and think side panel of a 1970’s era van, or a “MacGyver” episode.

  2. Yeaaaah Daniel! You are such a positive, inspiring person. Thanks for being awesome 🙂

  3. Sarah says:

    Congrats Daniel! You are so fun and so encouraging to run with. Can’t wait to see what you do to Country Music this year!

  4. Cheytown says:

    Daniel is the Will Hunting of running statistics….congrats, buddy!

  5. Rachel Schaffer says:

    Daniel was one of the first people I met at East Nasty and one of the reasons I kept coming back. He is so friendly ALL THE TIME, I think he probably has an endless stream of endorphins from all his training to keep him so positive! Good luck Daniel, I have no doubt you are going to crush all your running and charitable goals this year, you are truly an inspiration to us all!

  6. Jon D. says:

    Congrats Daniel!!!

  7. […] Tara, Lauren, Kandice, Mark, Denise, Kim, Colleen, Chris, David, Taylor , Grace, Jon, Heidi & Daniel (sorry if i missed […]

  8. […] Alley Pendleton, Michelle Allen-Parker, Kristin Matthews, Lenny Bertoldo, (her now triathlon coach) Daniel Hudgins, and the guy who got her into this triathlon business, Jim Schwan (yeah, I’ve heard Schwanny is […]

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