Thursday's I like to spotlight a different runner from around the world.
Today I'd like to introduce you all to
Tell me what first got you interested in running?
For a really long time I really wanted to ‘become a runner’. I know that sounds strange, but its true. I’d see people running, read race recaps on blogs, and think about how much I bet I’d like running. I just really wanted to be a runner. The only problem was I didn’t really know how to get past the first mile. So after several failed attempts at Couch-to-5K programs, I decided that I needed to something else, so I signed up in the Spring of 2012 to run the Nike Women’s Half Marathon with Team in Training. Team in Training helped me realize pretty quickly that I was in fact not going to die if I attempted to run more than one mile at a time, and got me through my first 13.1 finish line. Since then I have run a whole lot of other races, and in October of 2013, I officially became a marathoner when I ran the Nike Women’s Full Marathon.
How long have you been running?
Since April/May of 2012. So just over 2 years!
I prefer longer runs, I’d say 8 miles plus. I love getting to the halfway point and knowing no matter what you are finishing that run, and you are going to feel great.
Do you run races? Which types?
Yes, all types of races! I’ve done fun runs, like the Color Run, and Bay to Breakers in San Francisco, and, a handful of 5 and 10Ks, five halfs and one full marathon!
Do you have a favorite race ever? Tell us why it is so memorable to you.
The Nike Woman’s Marathon will always be my favorite race. It was not only my first half and full marathon, and runs through the city that I began running in, the race also benefits The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). I ran Nike the first time for myself, to become a runner, but the second time around I ran it for my Dad. A year after I began training with Team in Training and fundraising for LLS, I found out my dad had been diagnosed with Leukemia. Don’t worry, he is doing very well at the moment, but I hope to run a race every year to benefit LLS in honor of him and in honor of my running. They gave me running through Team in Training and I am able to give back to my dad and everyone else that suffers from blood cancers.
If you’d like to support my fundraising efforts this year, you can donate to through my Team in Training page here: http://pages.teamintraining.org/vtnt/chicago14/janepfrank
Utter relief. Every race, no matter the distance, I cross that finish line and think, ‘Thank the lord that is over!’ Not because it was arduous, but because I am so proud of myself for finishing and so happy that I can call myself a runner one more day. (Okay, and because I get to stop, talk off my running shoes, and drink chocolate milk. I admit it!)
If you could run any race in the entire world, which one would you pick?
I really want to run the New York City Marathon. Not just because it’s an amazing race, in an amazing city, but because for the entire 26.2 miles I know I’d be thinking of my grandmother who lived in New York City until the day she passed. 26.2 miles of smiles because I’d see different sites and think of the amazing things she did in her life. Now that sounds like an awesome marathon.
Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions you follow?
I have to eat the same thing before any race or long run: toast, peanut butter, and banana. I know that is the norm for a lot of runners, but if I don’t eat it, I will fake myself out with stomach pains that probably do not exist.
I am really gunning for a big PR at the Chicago Marathon this Fall. I am hoping to cut over 30 minutes off my time, and I think with a lot of training and a little luck I will be able to do it. I also want to start trail running more and maybe even run an Ultra after Chicago!
Do you have a funny running related story to share? Or something that happened to you while out on a run that made you laugh?
The best thing that ever happened to me running was I was on a solo run, which are not my favorite, and this guy running towards puts his hand in the air and yells, “HIGH FIVE!” I stuck up my hand, received maybe one of the greatest high fives of my life and we both kept running. I laughed for a good 5 minutes because it was just the best thing ever. Why don’t we all do that?
Do you enjoy group or solo running?
I LOVE group running! If I am in a group I am automatically having more fun and challenging myself more. I run solo when I have to, but I prefer my fellow runners striding next to me.
I like rolling hills the best. Working to get up and then finding that relief on the way down. I love that it makes your body work in every way possible, but lets you find a solid pace that you can keep up with the entire run.
Do you listen to music when you run? If so what are your top two favorites that help you motivate yourself to push harder?
Sometimes but not always. But when I do, it’s an eclectic mix. Eye of the Tiger is a staple on my iPod, and I love running to Katy Perry’s counter part Roar. Both just get me excited. Cliché, but true.
I love eating, cooking, and traveling, and now that I am living in Colorado I try to hike and ski as much as possible.
What are some of your life’s bucket list items?
I really just want to travel everywhere. I have quite a few countries marked off my list, but there are so many more!
Tell me something unique about you?
I like to joke around and call myself a gypsy. In the last 5 years I’ve made 4 major moves: Monterey to LA, LA to DC , DC to San Francisco, and last but not least, San Francisco to Denver where I’m currently living. I may be addicted, as more than one person has mentioned that possibility, but I think it’s just that I go where life takes me, and right now life has put me in Denver.
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