Missileer races toward his Olympic dreams

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Katrina Heikkinen
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
In 8th grade, he won the 1,600-meter race during a regional track championship.

As a freshman in high school, he was a 4x800 relay member on his school's track team in Huntington Beach, Calif.

But it wasn't until his junior year of college when he ran his first marathon - the Air Force Half Marathon - that he found his niche.

Fast forward to today, 1st Lt. Jacob Bradosky, 341st Operations Group ICBM deputy combat crew commander, will be one of 12 men representing the U.S. Armed Forces in the 55th World Military Cross-Country Championship in Apatin, Serbia, on March 16.

"I grew up playing soccer, and I always liked being active," Bradosky said. "I transitioned to cross-country running my senior year of high school and discovered I excelled at long distance. As a young child, I always aspired to be an Olympian. That was always in the back of my mind growing up, and it's still a dream."

Bradosky entered the Air Force through the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, and started running with the Air Force cross-country team in 2010. That same year he won the 35th Marine Corps Marathon, beating out members from all other branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. In 2012 he placed 3rd in the Air Force Half Marathon. On Feb. 5, he was selected to compete in the 2013 Armed Forces Cross Country Championship in St. Louis.

Despite a full-time career as an Air Force missileer, Bradosky finds time to pursue his passion in hopes of qualifying for the Olympic marathon trials.

"Training can be tough at times," Bradosky said. "Sometimes I have a lot of early morning or late nights, depending on my work schedule. Fortunately, I've had very understanding leadership over the course of my career, and I've been allowed to go on permissive temporary duty's in order to race."

Although the monotony of running sometimes feels like a second job, Bradosky says the benefits are worth the effort.

"Running is a great way to release the stresses and frustrations of life," he said. "For me, it's a gift from God and I don't want it to go to waste. I think it's a special connection I share with the one who gave me the gift and I want to use it to the best of my ability."

Bradosky can be found running on the Rivers Edge Trail along the Missouri River or at the base gym when he isn't on alert or spending time with his wife.

"After I finish my collegiate career, I want to continue pursuing my dreams and continue to run with the Air Force team particularly and work on improving my times little by little," Bradosky said. "Although I'm about two minutes short of making the Olympic trials, for now, I really enjoy the Air Force and have no intention of leaving."