Sophomore Miles Batty was featured in the Nov. 6 BYU campus newspaper Daily Universe. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
When was the last time you ran a mile? When was the last time you ran 10 miles?
For Miles Batty, it was just yesterday. In fact, Batty runs 10 miles every day. The only exceptions are Sundays, where he doesn’t run at all, and days before big races, when he might run only eight miles.
Batty runs in the fall for the BYU cross country team and in the winter for the track team. Running is an intense, time-consuming activity. However, Batty has found out how to be successful at running and school while having a girlfriend at the same time.
“He’s a very hard worker,” says Tyler Batty, Miles’ older brother. “He puts all he has into everything he does.”
The sophomore from Sandy understands the value of dedication and sacrifice. Whether he’s trying to improve his time in the 8K or maintain a high GPA in the pre-med program, Batty takes the same approach to both.
Mile by mile, he gets faster and stronger on the way to becoming a great runner. Day by day, he studies and learns more on his way to becoming a doctor. If he’s not running, then he’s doing homework.
“I pretty much have no time for serious hobbies,” Batty said. “I’ve kind of had to give up playing basketball to not risk any injuries, and I’m really busy all the time, trying to keep up on my grades and everything else.”
It is a demanding lifestyle, but a successful one. Batty has an academic scholarship and is the best runner on one of the best cross country teams in the nation.
This year’s team is considered one of the best ever, mostly because of the emergence of Batty.
“We thought we might be a top 15 or top 10 team this year,” said teammate Ryan Merriman. “But now that Miles has come out better than expected, we think we could be fourth or fifth.”
Batty returned from his mission in Brazil last year a bit heavier and out of shape. But he surprised his teammates by how quickly he regained his conditioning and rose to the top of the team.
Many people believe Batty may not have as much natural talent as other runners, but he compensates for that with his competitive nature.
One example of this was at the MWC Championships, where he collapsed at the finish line after spending all his energy trying to catch New Mexico’s Kenyan runner.
“Miles is one of the toughest kids I’ve ran with,” Merriman said. “He always has to be in front with the fastest guy, which is why he’s so good.”
For Batty, the definition of “good” keeps changing.
“I started running when I was a freshman [in high school], and I just gradually got better and better,” Batty said. “Then after I won the state championship my senior year, I was recruited to BYU, which is something I didn’t think would ever happen.”
This year, Batty has learned to be good at BYU, by being the first Cougar across the finish line in every race. More recently, he has learned to be good in the conference by winning MWC Athlete of the Week twice and being named to the all-MWC First Team.
Despite all his success, teammates and coaches say Batty has never let it get to his head and continues to humbly lead by example.
“He’s got lots of talent,” said teammate Tommy Gruenewald. “But he takes a quiet leadership role on the team. He always gives his best effort in practice and raises confidence and respect.”
“I’ve been very pleased with his dedication to the team and we will continue to look to him for leadership,” said head coach Ed Eyestone. “I think he will only get better from here.”
Now that he’s considered good in the conference, Batty is trying to be good in the NCAA. On Nov. 14, he will be quietly leading the Cougars at the NCAA Mountain Region Championships, one mile at a time.