By Bryan Kiel
Brianna Tevnan is a senior cross country and distance runner from Boscawen, New Hampshire. Tevnan returned this year, after not running since 2011 because of injuries, and instantly became one of Fordham’s top cross country run- ners. She has led the women’s team in every race she has competed in, including a second-place finish at the Metropolitan Championship in October.
The Fordham Ram: Why did you decide to run for Fordham?
Brianna Tevnan: I’ve been running in New Hampshire since the sixth grade. As recruitment letters came in, I knew I wanted to stay on the East Coast, and I thought about Fordham a lot because I’m from a really small town and being in New York City intrigued me. I came down here for a recruiting trip and I fell in love with the team and the program, and it was Fordham all the way.
TFR: As a three season athlete, how do you conduct your training in the summer and during the fall season?
BT: We train on our own from June to early August and come back to school mid-August. During the summer, you really try to push yourself. If you come back and you didn’t train well back home, it really does show. Once we get back for pre-season, we do about two workouts a week, where we will work on speed and hills. Most of our races are at Van Cortlandt, one of the hilliest courses there is. Being our home course, we really need to make that an ad- vantage for us.
TFR: What would you say is your favorite season to run in?
BT: Most people wouldn’t say cross country is their favorite sea- son, and during this time of year [the weather] really can be miserable to run in. The A-10 Championship was very cold and this past weekend at Regionals was brutal as well. But I really like being outside and running on different terrain. It’s much better running 5Ks out- side than 25 laps around an indoor track! I’ve also really grown to like steeplechase during the outdoor track season in the spring, something I did not get to do before I came to Fordham.
TFR: Do you think there is any connection between where you are from and your love for cross country?
BT: Coming from New Hampshire, I really enjoy being outdoors. I love hiking and all the trails that are around by me, so there probably is that connection. Training in New York is also different. I naturally do more workouts on the streets here, and unless we are at Van Cortlandt practicing, there isn’t much course or trail running.
TFR: Do you have a favorite memory from your years of running at Fordham?
BT: My favorite memory is probably breaking the steeple-chase record last year in the spring. I really had my sight on that, and just being embraced by my team was the best feeling. That’s the way it is for our team. It gives us joy to see other people’s successes, so if I don’t do so well, I am still really happy others did well. That support made that accomplishment very special for me.
TFR: Have you taken on a new leadership role now that you are the top runner for the women’s cross country team?
BT: I think that because I’m a senior with all the experience of being an upperclassman, I’m able to give advice to the younger members of the team. You are able to know the ins and outs of Fordham and the athletic department. Things become second nature, and you are able to answer questions and give advice with simple things and some of the harder issues they may have. I enjoy helping out the team in that aspect.
TFR: Do you have any plans after you graduate from Fordham?
BT: I’m an environmental studies major, but I hope to stay in New York and hopefully get a job doing conservation work here. I’ve been a vegetarian since I was eight and have a strong passion for wildlife biology. It’s nice being in a city where there are a lot of opportunities, even in environmental causes. I also have another season of eligibility for cross country which I will take advantage of next year, and spend time looking for a job while still running.