Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Inspiring Marathon Women

I love to run. This is an obvious fact. Upon taking up running, I chose the marathon as my goal and have since fallen in love with the marathon even more so than running. I will do other races, but I never feel the same satisfaction when crossing the finish line of a marathon. I also don't have any desire to do an ultra marathon, even though one would think that would be the next step in my goals. Ultras are crazy awesome, but I don't think my body is cut out for them.

I wanted to take a post to write about some incredibly inspiring marathon women who I can't get enough of.

I live just outside of Boston and like I mentioned in my guest post at Healthy Happier Bear, I started running because of the Boston Marathon. I love everything about this race. I go to the Expo every year dreaming of when I will be picking up my own packet. I have volunteered at the race. I have watched it on TV. I love all things Boston Marathon.

This past April, I was working in Boston as a nanny right near Boylston Street, so I was surrounded by banners and runners in the week leading up to the marathon. I was obviously jealous, but also excited as I knew with my recent Boston Qualifying time, that this would be me the following year.

It was at this time that I also first joined Twitter and I was tweeting about my excitement over Desiree Davila running Boston this year. Davila is a Brooks Hanson runner and so amazing to watch run. I couldn't wait to see how she did at Boston and my excitement escalated during the race. If you watched, you saw how she only lost the race by 2 seconds. She ran an incredibly smart race and looked amazingly strong at the end. I literally could not sit still watching her run. I am so excited that an American woman was able to run such an incredible race and prove that we can compete. I really hope Desiree makes the Olympic team and proves herself even more in London next year.

The BAA posted a picture on the Boston Marathon Facebook page a few weeks ago, that is the coolest picture. It is at the 15k point of Boston last year. You can see the lead pack and not far behind, running her own race was Desiree, amazing!

Another marathon woman that I am in awe of is an obvious choice.

As a mother, it is even more inspiring to see someone have a child and run a marathon in an amazing time only 9 months later as Kara Goucher did. I really don't need to say much about Kara's running, she is so strong and has such a big heart. After placing 3rd at the Boston Marathon in 2009, it was how she spoke and reacted that made me an even bigger fan. She ran an awesome race and came up short. The sadness on her face showed how normal she was. I loved how she wasn't afraid to get pregnant and start a family in the height of her career. The day after the Boston Marathon last year, I was walking around the mall in downtown Boston. Out of the restroom came Kara carrying her sweet little son. To say I was starstruck was an understatement. I stood back and watched as she changed her son's diaper on a bench and interacted with her family. To me, she is a celebrity but to see her as a mother outside of running was a privilege. She is a beautiful, amazing woman and such a positive influence to American women athletes.

Within the blog community I have also come to recognize a few women that I look up to and thought I would give links to their blogs so that you can see how an every day person can become inspiring.

First, is a woman, Devon Crosby Helms, who I follow both on Twitter and her blog.

She qualified for the Olympic Trials for the Marathon this past year and will be running the Trials in Houston. This alone is amazing to me, but last month she wrote a post about where she began. Talk about inspiring. Devon is ranked in the world for her 100k distance on top of her amazing marathon running yet she started out where the rest of us have. Obviously, she is a gifted runner, but her hard work makes her shine.

Another runner that I find inspiring has not qualified for the Olympics, but is a mother who has made so many improvements to her running, that I just want to soak it all in to learn more.

Dorothy from Mile Posts, is a mother of 3 and has ran through pregnancies and has proven that having kids will not slow you down. This past month, Dorothy ran an amazing 3:13 marathon at the Columbus Marathon before her youngest child even turned 1. She is even fast with a triple jogging stroller. I can tell you, my double jogger slowed me down. Not only is her story amazing, but she is incredibly inspirational and helpful on Twitter. Her posts on her blog include information that we all can learn something from.

So there you have a few of the many runners that inspire me. Do you know any bloggers that I should follow that have an amazing story? What elite runner inspires you?


robinbb said...

I hadn't heard of a couple of these women so I'll have to check them out. Thanks for sharing this!

robinbb said...

I love this post! Dorothy is a major inspiration to me as well!!!

robinbb said...

Thank you. I love how blogging can introduce you to so many people that do such awesome things.

robinbb said...

You will love reading about them. Such inspiration!

robinbb said...

I have just found Dorthy's blog a couple weeks ago myself. Very inspiring indeed! Loved this post!

robinbb said...

Love this post. I would TOTALLY be including Dorothy as well. Definitely Kara, that goes without saying! Not to take anything at ALL away from these amazing ladies, the "regular joe's" inspire me a LOT as well. The mom who works full time, juggles kids and being a wife, feeding the dogs and checking the fish tank; in between volunteering at the school and 3 am runs on the treadmill. At that point, just the the dedication alone is inspiring.

I look forward to reading more of your blog!