I’m pleased to announce this week’s East Nasty of the Week is none other than Steven McNeal! Steven was born in Columbus, OH and grew up in Summerville, GA. He was pretty much the perfect student- straight A’s, perfect attendance, and all-state band. He realizes now, he probably need to chill a little bit (and maybe even skip class just once Steven!). Playing the trombone, Steven was all about the marching band in high school.
So it makes sense when choosing a major, he would obviously be a music major. At Jacksonville State Univeristy (not that Jacksonville, Jacksonville, ALABAMA folks) he started out as a music major and then switched to accounting. Steven loved his college experience (all 6 years!) and even though he switched majors, he still remained active in the band and in other music groups. After graduation, Steven found the perfect job combining his love of music and his accounting skills at the Nashville Symphony as an accountant. He is now an accountant at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC).
Steven has been running since college and has always tried to be as fit and healthy as he reasonably can. So while most people might run an occasional half marathon or even marathon, not Steven. He runs 50 milers. I guess everyone has their own definition of “reasonable”! Steven’s biggest running accomplishment is finishing the Lookout Mountain 50 miler in 11 hours and 12 minutes in December 2012.
While doing track intervals a group of East Nasties showed up at the track to run (We East Nasties tend to travel in packs) and told him about the group. And he’s been running with the group since January 2012. One of his favorite East Nasty memories is running the Tom King Half Marathon this year side by side with Daniel Hudgins. They both PR’d with a time of 1:33! One of the things that Steven loves most about East Nasty is the friendships he’s made. Steven feels the friendships he has made at East Nasty are more rewarding than any PR ever could be.
I asked Daniel Hudgins to share a little bit more about Steven and he had this to say, “I’m so glad Steven and I started running together. He has become and is an incredible training partner, friend, and source of inspiration.” In fact, Steven even traveled to Boulder and Wisconsin to cheer Daniel on in some pretty big races. Daniel had the chance to support Steven this weekend as Steven ran the Lookout Mountain 50 miler this past Saturday. Daniel braved the muddy trails and ran the last 16 miles of Steven’s 2nd 50 miler this weekend. Talk about a true friend!
Steven mainly runs trails, BUT he does run on the roads with East Nasty, the 12SouthRunners, and the occasional road race. Congratulations on East Nasty of the Week and finishing your second 50 miler Steven!