Member Spotlight: Naomi Mills

Where are you from? What brought you to Missoula?

I grew up in Northern Idaho, a little town called Bonners Ferry. I moved to Missoula in 2006 to study English and Spanish Education at the University of Montana and I loved everything about it so much that I stayed!

When did you start running and why?

I played soccer in high school but never really ran independently until college when I played for the Missoula Betterside Rugby team and started running to train on days that we didn’t have practice. After that I grew more and more interested in running when I started fighting wildland fires in the summer for the Forest Service and discovered that it helped me get in shape for fire season and I also enjoy it!

Roads, Trails, or both?

I prefer to run mostly on trails with some road runs mixed in for speed and variety. North Hills and Rattlesnake trails are my current jam.

What is your favorite post race indulgence? 

My favorite post race indulgence is a frosty glass of IPA at the Kettlehouse, followed shortly thereafter by a large pizza at Biga Pizza and perhaps a dessert stop at Big Dipper.

Do you have a favorite local race? 

Since I fight fires all summer I don’t get to enjoy all the great summer races in Missoula. However, my favorite off season races include: Run for The Luck of It for a nice speedy road run, the Elk Ramble to enjoy the last remnants of fall, and the Double Dip for some good old fashioned suffering.

Finish this sentence: When I’m not running, I’m… crossfitting at Zootown Crossfit, riding my mountain bike slowly or jumping out of airplanes to fight to fires. And if none of those things, I’ll be eating.