Self-described age group: Thirties
Residence: Columbia Heights
Occupation: External relations and outreach manager, Trust for America’s Health
Why you run: I love it – both competitively and recreationally – and, it makes me feel good. I also love the outdoors and exploring, so running is a great way to combine the two.
When did you get started running: After college. I ran the Disneyland Half Marathon at the encouragement of my older brother. My goal was to beat him … I did, but he’s also 12 years older than me … We’re competitive, and I knew if he beat me, he would hold that over me given how much younger I am. After the half, I ran the Los Angeles Marathon. However, I started running regularly after moving to D.C. and meeting the Pacers 14th Street Fun Runs.
Have you taken a break from running: Not really … However, I started doing triathlons five years ago, and I love mixing in the two additional sports to break things up from time to time. I also think it has made me a stronger runner and helps me avoid injuries.
Training shoe: Adidas Pure Boost
Coach or training group: Pacers 14th Street Fun Runs, YTri, and the P and 15th Street Saturday run group – I meet so many amazing people from there; made great friends; and gone on many adventures with them!
The hardest race you’ve ever run: Boston 2016. It was my first time running it, and I was trying to go for a PR … that did not happen. It was hot, but also a harder course than I expected, and I ended up walking quite a bit. I was excited to finish, but also pretty disappointed with my performance. I ran Boston again this year, and the conditions were miserable – 30 degrees, torrential downpour, and 40 MPH winds. It was another mentally and physically tough race, but this time, having learned from experience, I ran a much better race. #redemption
Most adventurous decision you’ve made with your running: I always try to push myself further and to see how far I can take myself. After several years of half and full marathons, Olympic and half-iron triathlons, I completed my first Ironman at Lake Placid. It was awesome, and I will do another one.
Running mentors: My running and triathlon friends. They are all uniquely inspiring, and I love seeing them all preserving and achieving their goals. I learn something, and draw motivation, from each of them.
My favorite place to run in the D.C. area is: Rock Creek Park and anything involving the Klingle Trail (That’s now my favorite hill in D.C.)
Favorite local trail: Custis Trail
My best race was: Chicago Marathon 2014 and 2016. Both times I set my marathon PR there and qualified for Boston. Moreover, many of my friends ran as well, or were there spectating making both times memorable experiences.
Favorite local race: American Odyssey Relay
Ideal post-run meal: PB&J: Wheat bread, chunky peanut butter on both sides, and strawberry preserves.
Favorite flavor of gel, gu, etc: Salted Caramel
Goals: I want to break 2:45:00 to qualify for the Tokyo and Berlin Marathon. So far, among the Abbott World Marathon Majors, I ran Chicago and Boston, and I am running New York this fall. I qualified for each of those marathons, and I got my eyes set on doing the same for Tokyo and Berlin. Technically, I qualified for London, but they only allow qualifying time for U.K. residents – so for now, I will keep adding my name to the lottery.
Your advice for a new runner: Join a running group. Also, run strong, run smart, run with heart, smile, and have fun.
Favorite running book: What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami; The Last Pick: The Boston Marathon Race Director’s Road to Success by David McGillivray; The Perfect Mile by Neal Bascomb.
Song in your head during a run: Oh there are many … but a few include, Defying Gravity from the musical Wicked, How Far I’ll Go from Moana, and Till I Collapse by Eminem (that’s my pump-up song before every race).
Have you dealt with a major injury: During training for my first marathon, I had runners knee and did not run for about a month. Fortunately, I’ve not had any other major injuries which I think is partially attributed to the triathlon training and strength training that I do.
Running quote: “My time, the rank I attain, my outward appearance – all of these are secondary. For a runner like me, what’s really important is reaching the goal I set myself, under my own power. I give it everything I have, endure what needs enduring, and am able, in my own way, to be satisfied.” – Haruki Murakami “Run the mile you are in.” – Rachel Tulchin
Why is the D.C. area a great place to be a runner: D.C has many great trails and you are so close to nature. Also, the running and triathlon community is wonderful and so supportive.
Heritage alumna Weini Kelati ran the world championships 10 k standard and several local runners won distance races at college conference championships.
Beach Drive in D.C.’s Rock Creek Park will remained closed to through traffic until at least Labor Day, local infrastructure planners want runners’ input.
Former Westfield runner and All-RunWashington honoree Johnny Pace produced a video for the Pacers Running film series on Joan and Drew Hunter.
NPS will accept comments through May 19 on proposals to create unprotected bike and pedestrian lanes on Hains Point. A remote meeting April 19 at 5 p.m. will elaborate on the options.