|"It's nice to just enjoy the run"|
We run for health and sanity...and we LOVE to eat! Additionally, Jen runs to ensure she sets a positive, healthy example for her little girl, Reagan.
How long have you been running? How did you get started? Why did you choose running over other activities?
Forced into running for the cross country team our freshman year of high school (1994), we dragged our feet, kicking and screaming the whole way to the first meet. We really only started running because our basketball coach told us we had to. It took several years after that to really experience the joys of running. We also play basketball, hike, Jen snowboards, and soccer. But at the end of the day, running is the only thing that calms the mind and we love it!
How do you motivate yourself to run regularly? What about on the days the weather is bad or your are feeling particularly lazy?
We set goals for ourselves and post motivational quotes/pictures around our houses! Plus, as we've entered the blogosphere and Twitterverse, we find TONS of motivation out there (like these interviews)! When the weather is bad or we're feeling lazy, we focus on that next race and wanting to get a PR!
Do you use a running coach, or read any books to aid in your training?
We wish we could afford a running coach! We read motivational books, "Born to Run" and "The Extra Mile", that do have some training tips in them. The closest thing we have to a coach is the Garmin, RunKeeper, and Daily Mile! If anyone wants to coach us for free though...we would NOT object!
How do you fit running in with your daily schedule?
Jess: As an active duty Marine, I'm very blessed that the USMC places great emphasis on being in shape. They allot five hours a week during working hours to do physical training. I try to get in my runs either at 0600 or during lunchtime.
Jennifer: I'm a stay-at-home-mom. I make running a part of our daily activity. And I also run with my running group, Stroller Warriors, twice a week.
Do your friends and family support your running or think you are crazy?
Both! The amazing support of those on the web is awesome. The "crazy" comments only come when the distance of the race is anything over a half marathon!
What is your favorite running terrain (road, trail, treadmill)?
We love the trails. Beautiful scenery makes a good run even better!
What is the hardest race you've run to date?
Jess: The hardest race I've run to date is the Dances with Dirt 50k in Michigan. That was back in 2001 though, so it's been a while.
Jennifer: The hardest race I've run was the Washington, DC Inaugural Marathon. I think it was in 2000, but I'm not positive. Jessica had the great idea to buy my entry as a birthday present…only I hated running at this stage of my life. It was miserable.
What is the most enjoyable race you've run to date?
Jess: The most enjoyable race I've ever done is the Old Dominion 50-miler. It was my second ultra, but first attempt at 50 miles, and there was no pressure. The ultra community is full of some awesome people and they
Jennifer: The most enjoyable race was probably the Stephen Siller Tunnel To Towers 5k that I just ran this year. My FIL watched my daughter so I got to run sans stroller. I just kept picking up the pace and hardly noticed. It was my new PR!
Have you ever been injured due to running? What were the ramifications?
Jess: Ugh, currently plagued with lingering PF. I know how to treat it, and I'm willing to do everything BUT take time off of running. I try to stay on the bike more and let my feet rest, but the road calls to me and I have to get out there.
Jennifer: I'm lucky to rarely experience any injuries; however, just yesterday, I strained my calf muscle after running 5.75 miles and then trying to tack on a crossfit workout about 30 minutes later. So far the ramifications are minimal…bought a foam roller and have to take today off and just bike.
Do you use any music or run tracking devices when you run, or are you a naked runner?
We do both! However, recently, we've both been running sans music, because it's nice to just enjoy the run.
Jess: I use a Garmin 305 to track miles, but at least once a week, I hit the trail naked and there's no pressure to run a certain speed or hit a certain mileage.
Jennifer: I use the RunKeeper app on my iPhone religiously. And if I'm going solo, I usually play music through the speaker.
How do you get yourself through the difficult parts of your runs? Do you have a personal mantra or do you just give up?
Jess: I try to play mental games with myself during the difficult parts of the run. For example, I'll work through what I need to accomplish at work or where I want to go on my next vacation. I also try really hard to run with other people, because when the runs get tough, other people serve as great motivation for me!
Jennifer: I remind myself that I don't HAVE to run, I GET to run. If it wasn't fun, I would stop. To get through difficult times, sometimes I just pick a point and say to myself, "Run until you get there. Then reevaluate." Usually this takes me to the end of my goal. I also have "Enjoy Being" inscribed on my RoadID.
A lot of runners know that "Who has the runs" has a double meaning. How do you deal with the occasional "problem" that plagues every runner at one time or another?
Jess: I haven't had that problem to date, but I do find that I have to pee at the most inopportune times. I've had to go in a parking garage pre-race because I couldn't make it to the porta-john!
Jennifer: I had that problem at a recent 5k. I managed to make it to the finish without soiling myself, but then hit the port-a-potty leaving my baby in her stroller with some kind strangers. Unfortunately, nothing happened in there. So we started the hour drive home and I nearly considered emptying my race bag and relieving myself on the side of the road. Luckily we happened upon a gas station at that moment!
What advice would you give to someone thinking about taking up running?
Just start! Set realistic goals and post copies of them all over your house. Join a running group to help hold you accountable! And explain to friends and family why this goal is important to you and what they can do to be supportive of you.
What is your next big race?
Jess: Next big race is the HITS series sprint triathlon in Palm Desert on 3 December
Jennifer: Nothing big on the horizon, just some local 5ks. Hoping to do the Diva Half in Myrtle Beach in the late spring though. Just got to make sure my husband is on board:
What is your immediate running goal?
Jess: I want to run a 21 min 3-mile by July of 2012. Part of our physical fitness test is a 3-mile run, and 21 min is a perfect run for females.
Jennifer: I want to start running longer distances. I am always in a hurry to finish each run, so by about 5 or 6 miles, I'm smoked because I've kept a pace that doesn't allow for longer distance.
What is your ultimate running goal?
Jess: My ultimate running goal is to complete the Badwater Ulra one day
Jennifer: My ultimate running goal is to do a 70.3. Finishing a half marathon after such a long swim and bike ride is sure to be a challenge.
Do you have a way we can keep track of your progress (Twitter, Facebook, Blog, etc)
Yes, yes, and yes! We'd love to stay in touch with as many of you motivators as possible!
Twitter: Follow us @irunthere4iam
Facebook: our page is I Run, Therefore, I am
Blog: our blog is www.runningforreagan.blogspot.com.