Dyan Newberry: "Obsessive Runner" Looks Forward to Extra-Special Mini
Together We Run: Stories of the NYRR New York Mini 10K
The 47th NYRR New York Mini 10K, set for June 9, empowers women of all ages and fitness levels to be active and feel great on the run. The world’s original women-only road race, the Mini has had nearly 200,000 finishers since its first running in 1972, representing a diverse range of ages, backgrounds, and abilities. Over the weeks leading up to race day we’ll get to know a handful of entrants in this year’s race.
Dyan Newberry celebrates her 70th birthday on Mother’s Day this year—and she couldn’t think of a better birthday present than to run the NYRR New York Mini 10K on June 9. It will be Dyan’s fourth Mini and an extra-special one, as she’ll be running with her 15-year-old granddaughter, Lauren Stone.
“Well, not exactly with her,” Dyan qualifies. “My goal is to finish less than 20 minutes after her.”
But don’t let that seemingly modest aspiration fool you—Dyan is a powerhouse of an athlete. A native of Michigan, she spent most of her adult life in Houston, where she worked as a registered nurse and stayed fit by cycling 15-25 miles a day, six days a week. Seeking to vary her routine, she started running in 1996, ran the 2000 Houston Marathon as a “millennium goal,” and never looked back. “No more biking—I became an obsessive runner,” she says.
Dyan and her husband retired in 2004 and moved to Los Angeles, where she’s been tearing up the road racing scene ever since—nine marathons, 21 half-marathons, and countless shorter-distance races. Severe arthritis led her to have a right total hip replacement in 2012 and a left total hip replacement last year. “My surgeon approves and supports my running,” she notes. “I take all my race bling to my yearly checkups.” Her current routine is three miles of running, six days a week.
Dyan ran the Mini in 2008, when she was 60, and ran again in 2010 and 2013. “The Mini is special,” she says. “As the oldest women-only race, it has a unique recognition. I am so fortunate to be able to participate again.” Dyan calls New York her “home away from home” and has visited perhaps a dozen times since her first trip here with her daughter in 1997. Dyan and Lauren plan to make the Mini the centerpiece of a week-long visit.
“Running with Lauren will be very special for me,” says Dyan. A sophomore in high school, Lauren runs on her school’s track and cross country teams and has clocked 22:14 for 5K. “She loves running, and I cannot begin to tell you how priceless that is to me. It is a dream come true to be able to run races with her. She will motivate me to run faster on June 9.”
Regardless of her finishing time, Dyan plans to keep running and racing for many more years to come. “I don't know what I would do if I couldn’t run anymore,” she says. “I love running!”