1. Did/do you always find running enjoyable?
For the most part, yes, I have always found running to be enjoyable. Even when it was a “punishment” during school sports, I enjoyed running. I am a competitive person, and I love working hard. I can still remember my first positive experience with running – the Presidential physical fitness tests during middle school. I crushed that mile race! I think it was my fastest mile time ever – haha! The feeling afterward had me hooked. I ran track during middle school (800 m, 1600 m, hurdles, relays, little bit of everything), but then soccer took over during high school (outdoor and indoor). I continued with soccer into college, but after college, I needed a means of staying fit if I wanted to maintain my eating habits! I ran shorter races here and there (mostly 5Ks) and didn’t really get into marathoning until 2013. I joined up with a running program in Columbus and signed up for the Columbus Marathon. There are definitely moments that I can think of where running wasn’t “enjoyable”, but I look back on those times as growth experiences. The pain and bad runs help you appreciate the great runs even more.
2. What is your favorite distance?
My favorite distances are in the 10K to half-marathon range. I do enjoy the marathon, but I will admit that when I am out there, about halfway through, I think to myself, what the heck am I doing??
3. What do you struggle with most in running?
Being patient. Patience is not one of my virtues! I have a hard time with recovery runs and recovery days. I do not idle well! I know how important recovery is to training, however, and I am always working on being better at this.
4. Do you remember your first 5k, half marathon and/or marathon time?
I think that my first 5K was the Komen Race for the Cure in downtown Columbus maybe in 2005. I do not remember my time; I think I was just under 30 minutes. My first 10K was at the Troy, Ohio Strawberry Festival, and I remember thinking that it was the most grueling event ever! I think my 10K time was in the 60 minutes range. My first half-marathon time was 2:03 at the RunVermont Half Marathon in Burlington, Vermont. My first marathon time was 3:39 at the 2013 Columbus Marathon.
5. What is your advice for someone looking to improve speed and/or endurance?
Be patient and start slowly. Celebrate the small wins!
6. What is your can’t live without running gear, besides shoes?
My Garmin watch! I started running with a GPS device at the recommendation of Steve Devor before my first marathon in 2013, and there has been no looking back! I am an analytical person, and I love data.
7. Ok shoes, do you rotate? If yes, how many in rotation – explain.
Yes, I rotate through 2 pairs of shoes during marathon training. And I only run in them. I do not walk or do strength workouts in my running shoes.
8. Do you have a mantra that you use when racing or training?
“Punch that ticket to Boston.” My brother texted this to me before my Boston-Qualifying marathon race in Erie 2014. At about mile 18, I just kept repeating punch that ticket punch that ticket punch that ticket, and it carried me to the finish line. Sometimes I think back to this moment when the going gets tough during a race.
9. Do you ever feel unmotivated to train? If so, how do you overcome?
Yes, I mix it up – with different runs or different types of cross-training. Also, I start looking to groups of people to run with to help motivate me.
10. What is the best thing running has given you?
Relationships with great people, including my now husband, Bryan Stansberry.
Megan is a great source of information to the team, she is always sharing valuable information from her readings and it seems she reads as fast as she runs! She has CRUSHED her training for Erie Marathon and we wish her a restful taper and an epic race.