Monumental Runner – Emma Miller-Cvilikas

Name: Emma Miller-Cvilikas

Self-described age group: 25-30

Residence: Washington, D.C.

Occupation: Healthcare consultant

How has your running changed in the last six months: Since the pandemic, I’ve actually been running more. Running really brings a sense of normalcy in my day and we all need a little normal right now. I’ve also become more of a morning runner to beat the heat. That was a BIG adjustment as I am not a morning person. However, I had to adapt since treadmills aren’t available to me.

Why you run: I run for my mental health, for fun, for a challenge, for sanity and really because I love it. The beauty of running is that your relationship evolves over time and running is always there. Even if you step away, you can always come back.

When did you get started running: When I was 13/14.

Have you taken a break from running:  I’ve taken a few breaks in running. I took a break in high school when I developed tendinitis in my knees and took a break from running after I got a stress fracture in my foot in 2015. Thankfully my physical therapist had been a D I athlete, so she got why I asked every week “can I run now? My most substantial break wasn’t from running, but from racing. After my stress fracture, it took me a long time to get my confidence back. I PR’d fall of 2014 and I was really hitting my stride. It took some time to feel ready to push myself again.

Training shoe: Nike Infinity React or Saucony Kinvara 11

Coach or training group: I have two coaches, Elena and Meghan. They aren’t affiliated with any group, but I credit them for my growth these past few months. They’ve really pushed me and I’m a stronger runner for it.

The hardest race you’ve ever run: North Face Endurance Run in Va. I ran the half, but the course had to change last minute due to rain and it ended up being 14.2 miles.

Most adventurous decision you’ve made with your running: I’ve decided to run a half marathon in all 50 states. I think it’s a great opportunity to travel, explore different parts of the country I’d likely never go, and meet different members of the running community. COVID threw my schedule off just a tad, but I’ve got no time limit on this goal.

Running mentors: I don’t have specific mentors. I’m mostly inspired by other average runners. The best thing about running is that you don’t have to be a professional to BQ or break a 5:00 mile. Your colleague may be a sub elite runner and you’d have no idea. It really makes the sport accessible.

My favorite place to run in the D.C. area is: Georgetown waterfront

Favorite local trail:  W&OD

My best race was: Columbus Half Marathon in 2014.

Favorite local race: The D.C. Front Runners Pride 5k. So much energy and it’s for a great cause.

Ideal post-run meal: Eggs, toast, bacon, fruit

Favorite flavor of gel, gu, etc: I’m not a gel user, but I swear by Nuun tablets in the heat.

Pet peeve: Bikers that don’t speak before passing. Please say on your left or just ring a bell.

Goals: I want to break 1:45 in the half. After that, I’m tackling a marathon.

Your advice for a new runner: Don’t get in your head and don’t compare to others. How long it takes you to run one mile, two miles, three miles, etc, really doesn’t matter. Just get out there and do it.

Favorite running book: Paula: My Life So Far by Paula Radcliffe. And Shoe Dog by Phil Knight.

Song in your head during a run: That depends on the day, but I listen to a lot of AC/DC in hard workouts.

Have you dealt with a major injury: My biggest injury was a stress fracture in my foot in 2014/2015.

Running quote: One more song and you’re done.

Why is the D.C. area a great place to be a runner:D.C. is accessible and has variety. You can run downtown, through neighborhoods, in rock creek park, along the water, on the mall, etc. Theres a huge variety in places to run. And you can get to all these places by foot, car, metro, etc. D.C. makes it easy to be a runner.

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