My profession…wife of Juan, mother of Anthony, Jacob, Nicholas, Luke, Alina (18, 16, 13, 11 and 3), and sometimes a Notary Public.
I started running in… 2000, while training for an AVON 3-day 60-mile walk—just so I could get through my training mileage faster. Then it was on/off until I got serious in 2004. I signed up with Team in Training for the Long Beach Marathon to honor a friend’s son w/Leukemia. I just got to celebrate his 10th birthday with him the day after the Catalina Marathon (my 6th full!). Yay, Patrick, you inspire me!
My life/sport philosophy…It is what it is. If life throws you a problem, work it out, get through it whatever way you can, and do it with a smile. Same with a long workout—just bring it on, get it done, and you might as well have fun while you are doing it! No whining.
My favorite spot to be active…near the beach. I just love being near the ocean, preferably Maui, but I’m content with Long Beach.
Athletic highlights…Watching the Men’s Olympic Trials in NYC 2007, then running the marathon the next day. My mom was 100 yards from the Finish Line—when I ran over to her to give her a high five, she pointed to the Finish and said, “Go! GO!” That was a PR at that time of 4:25. Last year my mom was here for Long Beach; that was a PR of 4:08. I’m flying her out for this year’s Long Beach Marathon for sure!
My running experience with AREC has been… the icing on the cake! Such a wide and diverse group of people that “get it”—you know what I’m talking about? The stuff we eat, the rituals we have before a run and after…the runner mentality of being active and grateful for it. We just get it. There is always someone to run with, to talk to, to hang out with. My running friends have crossed over into other areas of my life. Birds of a feather truly flock together. Such a great group of caring and unique people that I am proud to be a part of!
I’ve been with AREC since… May 2007.
The best thing about AREC is… that it brings people together of different backgrounds that at least have running in common…once introductions are made, it’s like opening a gift, every week as you find out new facts about your running friends. AREC peeps motivate and inspire me.
I run because…endorphins are free, legal, and make me a balanced mommy/wife. It’s my time, my moments of living free. It also keeps my tush in single digit size jeans!
When I’m not running I…am cycling, swimming, doing a yoga class, grocery shopping, preparing mass quantities of food for my troops, attempting to clean my home, keeping the family calendar updated, taking kids to various appointments and lessons, going to Disneyland, drinking tea or coffee, playing with my 2 dogs, or just reading “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” AGAIN to my 3 year old daughter.
My favorite running surface is…roads, and then I think I am actually becoming a big fan of trails! I thought it would never happen, but Catalina converted me!
My pre-race meal is…oatmeal with cottage cheese and fruit, or wheat toast w/peanut butter, and coffee or tea.
After a race I treat myself to… anything I want for 24 hours! The funny part is that I still have my limits to what I’ll allow myself to eat. All that work shouldn’t be blown in one day!
My favorite race is… Disneyland Half. I did the inaugural race with the intent to make it my annual hometown race. They don’t know it yet, but they will be making a “Legacy” shirt for me when I do the 10th one in 6 more years! The medal is a huge Magic Castle. This year, Juan will be doing it as his first half. He said I didn’t have to stay with him. LOL
My goal is…to qualify for Boston at this year’s Long Beach Marathon. This year I can go for my current age time (3:50) or my next division’s time (4:00), and save it for Boston 2011. It’s going to be a great summer of training my tush off! I also have a Half Ironman on my calendar for July 2010—the more the merrier, I invite all of you to join me (registration for Vineman 2010 is this July).
My running mantra… Be comfortable with being uncomfortable. AKA: Run ‘til you Puke! Don’t be afraid to see what you’ve got in the basement—dig deep so you find out what you are really capable of.
I’m inspired by…athletes that have overcome a disability to continue to compete, and cancer survivors. I hope I never have to endure anything that hard, and have great respect and admiration for them.
My best training tip…go for time on your feet before you start going for mileage.
The best advice I ever got was… “Walk the hills” for Trail Runs (Mark Fell/Claudia Torres) and “Don’t talk during your race” (Mistii Comeau).
I want to improve in…the quality of my runs, especially the tempo run.
If I could run with anyone famous, it would be…Joan Benoit Samuelson or Ryan Hall. Oh, can I change that? Bono and the boys from U2!
I run races because…it’s a gauge of my training effort, and I love the medals, I’ll admit it. I love the vibe and energy of all the people in the race and on the sidelines, and more recently, the fact that I can run in a team shirt and feel like part of something bigger (I missed out on this in high school/college.).
My best experience was… New York City. The (Lakewood) Striders decorated my yard for a big sendoff. I was born in the Bronx, so it was like a “going home” moment. There was never a spot without a spectator (except the bridges), children were all bundled up giving high fives, and there were fire engines on the side streets with firefighters holding American flags waving to the runners. People from all over the world speaking their languages, but we all looked the same. Italians yelling, “Bella, Bellisimo!” The city was on its best behavior, and Times Square hotel employees were wearing marathon shirts. The roar as you enter the last few miles was just incredible; people lining Central Park told me, “C’mon, you didn’t come this far to stop now!” in their best New York accent as I neared the Finish Line. I’ll never forget it. And of course, Mom was there, telling me to “GO!” so I’d break 4:30! After the race SHE was too tired to walk to the hotel, so we got a bike cab—we thought we’d die the way he drove that thing. After a nice long bath, we went out for NY pizza and a cannoli.
I love…my husband of 21 years, my 5 incredible children, 80’s music, dark chocolate, Starbuck’s Doubleshot on Ice, and hanging out with girlfriends on a long run Saturday. I also love watching my 16 year old son run at track meets and imagining what it would be like to run a 5 minute mile like him.
I hate…doing housework, counting calories, snakes, and negative people.
I wish…that all ARECers, present and future, will be able to run injury free for many, many years to come. I just love you all and want it to always be this awesome.
To all… “Sustained motivation is essential to achieving your potential.” Grete Waitz