Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Runner Profile: Meredith

This is the first in a series of profiles of runners who have Run Farther and Faster through one or more of our programs- we think they are inspirational and hope others will find motivation and encouragement from their experiences.

Runner Profile: Meredith

Meredith participated in the Spring 2010 JCC 10K program and progressed to our Fall Half Marathon Training program, successfully completing the Parks Half Marathon in September 2010. She also was a participant in the Fall 2010 JCC 10K program, supplementing the 10K training schedule with additional mileage and speed work in order to successfully complete the Richmond Half Marathon in November with a new PR (Personal Record).

Age: 35

When I started running: Back in law school in 1997 but never more than 4-5 miles and I never raced either. Stopped in 2005 after my first daughter was born & didn’t start back up until Spring of 2009.

Why I run:
Running is my serenity & makes me feel good in so many ways. First, going for a run always helps me clear my head. As a full time working mom, running is my “me time.” Whether I’m with a friend to catch up or just by myself, there is always a sense of accomplishment felt when the run is over. Second, there is such a feeling of satisfaction & personal accomplishment when you finish a race, even if it was not the time you wanted. You have still crossed that finish line!! And last, well it definitely helps to keep me in shape!

Favorite local race: MCM 10k - the race was packed with so many people, but what an amazing feeling seeing all those marines out there helping to hand out water & cheer you on!

How I stay motivated: My kids are one of my best motivators. I love coming home after a long run on the weekend & my little ones, saying “mommy you went running again, yeah mommy!” And then seeing them and my husband at the finish line, knowing all that they’ve sacrificed for me to train for that race. Lastly, I love posting my runs on Facebook. And even though some of my friends have made fun of me for posting so much about running, they have also said that my running & talking about it has inspired them as well to get moving. So that alone is a runner’s high & motivates me to stick with it & keep moving!

Most memorable running moment: My last race I ran the Richmond Half Marathon. Around mile 11 I realized that I could finish in under 2 hours. Those last 2 miles I really pushed myself & finished with a time of 1:59:16, which was almost 12 minutes faster than my first half marathon that I had run only 9 weeks earlier. I always focus on running against myself & not others. I love to run no matter what the pace, but after this race, I truly understood what it means to get a runner’s high. There is an amazing feeling, knowing with hard work & focus, you can accomplish new personal bests & push yourself to the limits!

Future goals/race plans: Suntrust National Marathon in DC on March 26, 2011 (my first marathon). Then I’m hoping to run several other races in the area & work on my speed in 2011.

Advice for new runners: Stick with it!! But be smart about your running. Having suffered a few injuries along the way, I learned a few lessons the hard way. Resting your body is just as important, if not more, than your runs. Find friends who like to run as well. There is nothing like getting up at 5 AM in the dark & cold weather, where you could easily just go back to sleep, but you know that a friend is there waiting to run with you & is just as crazy getting up at the crack of dawn!! And last, just enjoy being outdoors and take in all the sights are you run. Find new places & routes to run & just enjoy getting your heart pumping!

Meredith with her daughters after the 2010 Richmond Half Marathon

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