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“Even if you don’t feel like it, train anyway.” My mentor told me this and at the time it was NOT what I wanted to hear. It reminds me that there will be days when training is the last thing I want to do but in order for me to improve then I have to do it anyway. There has never been a run that I have regretted and this quote resonates in my head when there are days when I would rather hit snooze.
Why do you run?
I run for myself. There was a point when I ran because I wanted to lose weight and then it sort of turned into running because I wanted others to be impressed by me. But now I run because I enjoy it. Running is hard, running sometimes sucks, and running can bring out the worst in you. But running also teaches you so much about yourself and life. It teaches you to push hard when the going gets tough, it teaches you that anything is possible, it teaches you that other people come in all shapes and sizes but can complete one common goal. When I finish a run I feel good about myself. I feel proud that I put one foot in front of the other and accomplished a goal that I set for myself. Running brings me so much joy and is worth the hurt it often brings. I have spent the better part of my life obese and heavy. I love showing people that you don’t have to be stick skinny to be a runner and that it is simply a matter of putting your mind to it and actually doing it.
Favorite place to run:
I live in a super small town and there is an old road that runs slightly parallel to the main road through town. It is hardly ever used and from one to the other and back is exactly 3.1 miles. I can hit this road any time of day and not encounter traffic and can even run sans a GPS watch since I know it is the perfect distance. It also gives me a front row view to our beautiful Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Running gear you can not live without:
My Garmin because I love knowing exactly how far I have gone at all times! And spandex shorts. My thighs love to rub together and my shorts ride up so spandex is my saving grace during every run!
When not running where would we find you?
As a teacher, I can be found in my classroom teaching a fantastic group of young people about literature/English and coaching middle school cross country. In my spare time I love to read, hike, box, and spend time with my family. I also spend a lot of time volunteering for our local track club. My volunteering allows me to direct a local 5k, facilitate the “swag bags” at our local marathon, and even dress up as a turtle to teach elementary school kids the fable of the tortoise and the hare.
Favorite post race fuel:
I LOVE drinking chocolate milk after a race. It helps soothe my stomach after a tough event. My favorite post race meal is a huge hamburger and french fries.
Song you want to hear at the finish line:
Flashdance: What a Feeling!