#TechRunsBoston: Q&A with Ethan Bernstein, Founder and CEO of Freebird

Photo credit:  Gameface Media

Photo credit: Gameface Media

Ethan Bernstein - Founder and CEO of Freebird and one of four runners on
TUGG's 2016 Boston Marathon team.

The 8-time marathon runner who is donating his bib proceeds to TUGG portfolio nonprofit Sitters Without Borders, sat down with us to share a little about who he is and why he's running Boston.

Here, Ethan reflects on the best and worst parts of being a founder, his marathon training pet peeve and why he chose to run for Sitters Without Borders.

What's the best part of being a founder?
Getting to choose the people I work with.

What's the worst part?
Never having time to tackle the "handle later" folder.

Which tech CEO or company do you most admire?
I love the start-up Confi, which was founded by a close friend of mine, Tess Brooks. Confi’s mission is to empower women to be confident in their bodies and relationships by providing the most credible women’s health information in an accessible and non-judgmental way.

What is your personal mantra?
"Help me, help you."

What was your best running experience ever?
In 2013, I participated in Hood to Coast, the longest relay race in the world. I ran my final leg at 4am on a mountainous road drenched in fog. It was pitch dark outside and there was no one around. Even with a powerful headlamp I could barely see my own feet. It was exhilarating!

What's the longest distance you've ever run prior to training for Boston?

Favorite running jam
No music – I listen to my surroundings.

Marathon training pet peeve
Waking up early.

What motivates you to finish your long distance training runs?
I get really hungry on runs, so I have to say...animal crackers waiting for me at the end. [Editors note: We asked Ethan what kind were his favorite. His reply, "The elephants!"]

What do you say to people who say they could never run a marathon?
If you put your mind to it, you can do it. It's about the journey, not about the finish. If you enjoy the journey, the finish line will always be within reach.

Do you train best in the morning, mid-day or evening?

I feel most like a badass mother runner when:
I'm wearing neon spandex. Because by definition, you have to be a badass mother to run in neon spandex.

How would you like to finish Boston?
Making it look easy.

Why are you running for Sitters Without Borders?
I chose to support SWOB because the greatest gift my parents gave me was the ability for me to pursue my education without distractions. I was incredibly lucky, but not everyone has the same opportunities that I did. I want to help those who didn’t – and give them the chance to pursue a better life for themselves and their families.

How can people get involved?
Donate money toward babysitting hours for a day, a week, or a semester or become a volunteer babysitter.

To show your support for Ethan and the rest of TUGG's Boston Marathon team,
as well as the incredible nonprofits they are supporting, join us at our
Spring Beer Garden & Marathon Meet & Greet on March 24th!

Sitters Without Borders helps low-income parents attend college by providing volunteer babysitting services.