Biography:

Eric Gillis made his Olympic debut at Beijing 2008 where he competed in the 10,000m. He then transitioned into the marathon, making his debut in Houston in January 2010 and finishing the year ranked second in Canada. In October 2011 he ran 2:11:28 at the Toronto Waterfront Marathon, going under Athletics Canada’s qualification standard for London 2012 by just one second. Gillis placed 22nd of the 85 men who finished the Olympic marathon and was the second-ranked Canadian in the field. In 2013 Gillis was again the second-fastest marathoner in Canada before taking over top spot in 2014 with his personal best 2:11:21 at the Toronto Waterfront Marathon. In October 2015 he went under the qualification standard for Rio 2016 with his 2:11:31 at the Toronto Waterfront Marathon.

Getting to know…

Family: Parents Colin and Teresa Gillis… Younger brother Rod and younger sister Shawna… Wife Emily Hurst… Children Luke (age 2) and Heidi (age 6)… Getting into the Sport: Did his first cross-country running season in grade seven… It was the first school sport he could try out for and knew from experience in other sports that he had good endurance… Has wanted to compete for Canada since watching Donovan Bailey win 100m gold at Atlanta 1996; can remember exactly where he was and what he was doing at the time… Outside Interests: Graduated from St. Francis Xavier University with a Bachelor of Human Kinetics in 2004 and a Bachelor of Education in 2006… Has not done any teaching for five years… Enjoys spending time with his two kids and having picnics at the park… Odds and Ends: Always goes to races with a good luck craft made by his kids in his bag… Favourite motto: Progress not perfection… Was diagnosed with dyslexia in grade two…