What is your favorite distance and why?
I think my favorite distance is the marathon. I have done far more marathons than any other distance. It gives me a sense of accomplishment to complete one.
What do you struggle with most in running?
I struggle most with injury. Since I started running in 2011, I have had two microdiscectomy surgeries and a spinal fusion on my lower back. I have also been in a boot several times for tendon issues and have had other muscle strains etc. Despite all the setbacks, I keep getting back up to fight another day!
Do you rotate shoes and if so, what is your current rotation?
I don’t rotate shoes. I have often wondered if it is something that I should look into doing.
Do you have a training mantra that you use when you are racing/training?
Never Give Up!!!
Do you ever feel unmotivated to train and if so, how do you overcome it?
I’m sure that we all feel at least a little unmotivated at times. When you own your own business, and have three active kids, life sometimes gets in the way. That being said, I try to look at the long-term goal and allow myself to move things around in my schedule if I have to do it to get the job done. I also try to do the longer workouts with other people, so I am held accountable.
What is the best thing that running has given you?
The best thing that running has given me is the freedom to have some “me” time. I have devoted a great part of my adult life to my family, so it has been nice to finally do something for me. Along with this has come the health benefits of better physical fitness and better stress relief. Finally, I love all the friendships that I have made through running.
What is the favorite race you have participated in and why?
Out of the almost 40 marathons that I have done to date, there are four races that are at the top of my list. The first is the 2012 St. George Marathon. This race was where I first qualified for Boston. It is also one of the most beautiful races that I have ever run. The second race would definitely be Boston 2013. I finished about 20 minutes before the bombs went off with a huge PR. If I hadn’t run the race of my life, I may have been at the finish line when the bombing occurred. The third race would be my first Beach 2 Battleship Ironman race. That is where I learned that I am more capable than I ever thought Ironman race (Beach2Battleship) where I learned that I am definitely stronger and more capable than I ever thought that I could be. Finally, the race that stands out as one of my all-time favorites is my most recent marathon (Toledo Glass City 2021) where after 8 years, I smashed my long-standing PR for the second time in two weeks.
How did you get started running?
In 2011, I had to care for my mother-in-law for over a month at the hospital before she passed away. I was in her hospital room talking to her son about Disney. Jeff said, “I bet there is something at Disney that you’ve never done”. I thought I had done virtually everything at Disney. I was skeptical about Jeff’s claim until he showed me a picture of his Disney Marathon weekend medals. He told me that I had the body to be a runner and recommended that I run a Disney race. I told him that I hadn’t run since middle school (where I ran the mile) and I hated it. I dismissed the idea until a few days after Marty passed away. It was the day after my birthday, and instead of a family party, I decided I would rather spend some time by myself. I went to the YMCA and decided I would try running around the indoor track. 51 laps later, to my surprise, I had completed three miles! I called Jeff and told him that I ran three miles at an 11 minute pace. Jeff reminded me that you only have to do a 16 minute pace to complete the Disney races. I made up my mind to do the Disney half. About 6 weeks later, it was a beautiful November day. I went out for a run and before I knew it, I had run 12 miles. Jeff told me that since I did that, I should come to Cleveland and run a half so that I would have proof of time for Disney. I ran my first half in about 2:20 and said, “I’m ready to sign up for my next race.” Since I had made so much progress, Jeff convinced me to change my Disney registration to the full marathon. I ran that race in January 2012 and have been hooked ever since!
What is your favorite running workout?
I don’t really have a favorite running workout. Until recently, I have never really done any formal marathon training. I am just starting to add variety into my workouts and am now incorporating speed work into my training. I’ve recently enjoyed track work and cut downs.
How many marathons have you run?
If you count the three marathons associated with my Ironman races, I have done 37 marathons.
Who is your favorite professional runner?
I don’t have a favorite runner. I admire many athletes both past and present.
What is the craziest conditions you have had to endure?
Strictly running, it would be Boston 2018. I ran in a driving rain, in 40 degrees with a 25-30mph wind. I was soaked before I even got to the start and had hypothermia at the end of the race. My mantra definitely kept me going that day!
Do you have a goal race that you haven’t done yet, and why do you want to do it?
My two goal races are London and Tokyo. I have done the other four majors, and really want to complete the series to earn my six star medal.
Do you listen to music when you run and if so, what music gets you pumped for a race?
I used to listen to music, but recently have turned away from it. I recently began using the metronome on my watch, and that seems to be enough to keep me focused. When I did use music, I preferred Broadway tunes.