Up until we reconnected on Facebook, and then started chatting about running.
Recently, Jen told me that she'd started running again, with a goal of running her first 5k race in August, and then her first half marathon in the fall. I've been so impressed by her determination and stick-to-itness (particularly since there aren't any running clubs in Brooklyn, so she's been doing this all on her own, and she's the mother of two young boys), and I'm sure she'll be as much an inspiration to other runners, whether seasoned or new, as she is to me.
Without further ado, I give you Jen Marsan, today's HRG Runner in Profile!
HRG: How long have you been running?
I have been running for three months. I started over a year ago, but I honestly had a tough time keeping it up with kids, and work. Then in November of this past year my whole family moved to NYC and after a whole winter of being cooped up in an apartment I was ready for something outside. I had been following your blog and got inspired to start again. This time I committed signed up for a 5km and a half marathon to keep me motivated.
HRG: How and why did you start running?
I started the first time because I was looking for variety in my workouts. This time it was deeper. I moved to NYC due to my husband's work, and I was at loose ends. I had left my job that I loved, and didn't have permission to work here so I needed a goal, a focus, and after reading what running did for you I thought this is perfect. It is goal based and your body is a continual work in progress, so it is personal; it feeds your soul.
HRG:Favourite part of running?
The feeling you get when you have been struggling through a week of training and you finally have that great run. There is nothing like that feeling, because you know that all those difficult runs made that great run possible.
HRG: Least favourite part of running?
As a new runner you have those days that just suck and you feel like you are never going to get any better and your progress is so slow. That is tough because the self-doubt kicks in -- especially when you see those runners that make it seem effortless. In NYC there are plenty of those believe me.
Favourite weather is rain, or cooler weather -- humidity is my enemy that I am trying to make friends with these days -- it's not going very well...
HRG: Favourite route (training or race) to run?
Right now it is the promenade in Brooklyn Heights or the Brooklyn Bridge Park. I will be tackling Central Park in Manhattan, and Prospect Park in Brooklyn when my longer runs begin in the next couple of weeks.
HRG: Favourite distance to run?
Not sure yet, I am still building my base. I am hoping that I will love long distance!
HRG: How do you keep motivated?
Knowing I have a half marathon in October is making me stick to it, but more than that it is a personal goal I have set to keep at it. That is more powerful than anything external.
HRG: Best pre-race meal?
Not sure. Any tips?
HRG: Best post-race meal?
Same as above!
HRG: Upcoming race goal?
5km, then the Half
HRG: Tips or words of wisdom for new runners?
As a new runner myself I can say that you it is not always easy, but if you keep at it you will get stronger. Set a goal if not a race, a distance. Follow a training schedule, start with a group or a friend. Then when you have that great run you will see it is all worth it!
HRG: Thanks Jen!