Monumental Runner -Tatiana Mota

Name: Tatiana P. Mota

Self-described age group: Masters (I am 41)

Residence: Alexandria

Occupation: Human Resources Department for National Geographic Society. HR Business Partner.

Volunteer roles in the running world: I love cheering at races – NYC and Marine Corps has been my favorite ones to cheer on – super fun

Why you run: I run because it makes me feel stronger and that strength translates into my daily life and helps me tackle life challenges more confidently. I also run because It teaches me about myself and my capabilities. Whether is a good or bad run, I always learn something. I also like the way it makes me feel.

When did you get started running: I got started in the spring of 2014. I was feeling stuck in life and needed a change. I signed up for the 101 session with Potomac River Running and that is how I got started.

Have you taken a break from running: Yes. About nine months.

Training shoe: Brooks Ghost and Brooks glycerin

Coach or training group: I have been running on an off mostly on with Potomac River Running

The hardest race you’ve ever run: Lake Placid Marathon. It was a really hot day and I wasn’t prepared for the course. It was also my first marathon and I officially came in last place. It was humbling, humiliating, and amazing at the same time. I learned a lot. That’s for sure.

Most adventurous decision you’ve made with your running: I would say signing up and showing up for that 101 running class four years ago – Basically, my most adventurous decision about running was to start running.

Running mentors: No one directly at this time. I am a ferocious consumer of podcasts so indirectly some of the guests on the shows and some of the show hosts. Marathon Academy is one of my favorite running related podcasts. In addition, I still hear my first coach; Coach T as she is affectionately known, in my head giving me advice. She was wonderful to me and I would not have kept up with running had not been for her mentorship and guidance.

My favorite place to run in the D.C. area is: Besides the National Mall, I love running across the Memorial Bridge towards Arlington Cemetery. It allows me to be reflective. I also like the trail that goes along Kennedy Center by the water into Georgetown.

Favorite local trail:  Crescent Trail and W & O.D. Trail

My best race was: My first race, the Army Ten-Miler, will always hold a special place in my heart

Favorite local race: Cherry Blossom Ten Miler

Ideal post-run meal: a four-egg, ham and mozzarella omelet

Favorite flavor of gel, gu, etc: Gu works well for me. There is three flavors I really like – Espresso Love, Chocolate Outrage & Peanut Butter

Pet peeve: When runners wear head phones during group runs. It drives me crazy as I feel it takes away the social aspect of running as part of a group. Plus, is flat-out rude.

Goals:I was fortunate to gain entry into this year’s Marine Corps Marathon so the goal is to train well, build my physical fitness backup, and run a good race – I also started swimming recently and have aspirations to complete a sprint triathlon later this summer

Your advice for a new runner: First I would say “Welcome to the sport” then I would encourage them to Join a running club and explain how amazing the running community is

Favorite running book: Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer

Song in your head during a run: I like to listen to music when I run alone so I have lot’s of songs in my head – some that charges me up big time are (Eminem’s Lose Yourself, Now We Are Free by Hans Zimmer and Running on Empty as Forrest Gump is my favorite movie) 🙂

Have you dealt with a major injury: Not major but enough to be disruptive. In 2016 I dealt with some overuse injuries (Foot and ankle tendinitis, knee bursitis and hamstring tendinitis) that took awhile to heal as I wasn’t very good at following doctor’s orders. It left me sidelined for a few months and super depressed.

Running quote: “There will come a day when I can no longer run. Today is not that day”

Why is the D.C. area a great place to be a runner: Well, to begin with, the city is simply beautiful and the monuments and the parks makes it for a unique D.C. experience. Plus, it is safe for the most part, runner friendly and with great local races to choose from. We are also a city filled with tourists in the spring and summer and I feel like as runners we get to inspire these people by being out there. Especially during the hot summer months. I know I am always inspired when I am walking and see runners in the National Mall.

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