US Military Endurance Sports

Ben Payne // Running

Motto:  “Whatever you are…be a good one!”

After a successful 4-year running career at the Air Force Academy competing in NCAA Division I Cross-Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track, Ben continued running while on active duty as a pilot deployed to Africa and Afghanistan, while also logging 3,400 flight hours and 1,200 combat hours. “I think resiliency is something you have to have in the military, that’s been a positive thing for my running career – making it work no matter where I’m at,” Ben said. In 2014 Ben was selected to train for the 2016 Olympic Games through the Air Force World Class Athlete Program, setting competitive times in distances ranging from 1 Mile (4:02) to the Marathon (2:18), ultimately placing 17th in the 2016 US Olympic Trials Marathon. Ben continues to improve, placing 9th overall in the 2016 NYC Marathon (2:15), and giving back by serving as the captain of the AF Cross Country and Marathon teams, and a counselor at Jim Ryun Running Camp, the premier running camp for high school students.