This month’s athlete spotlight features Kristen, a 30-something year old wife, mom of two, and middle school business education teacher in Southern Delaware. She describes her life as busy and full of chaos, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. Kristen runs the blog Jonesin for a Run with her older and wiser sister, Courtney. They like to keep it real and post fun workouts, upcoming races and race recaps, product reviews and other activities they take part in.
What is your favorite part about running?
My favorite part about running is the relationships it has brought into my life. I have met some absolutely amazing women that are now my best friends. Along with some of these awesome women I have met, running also allows me to spend even more time with my kids as I am often found pushing the duallie around town, singing songs or the ABC’s with my little ones!
How did you get started?
I started running because of that older and wiser sister I mentioned before. She started running local races and I of course wanted to do whatever she did (even at age 20). I signed up to run a 5k while she was running a half marathon. It took a while for the whole running thing to actually become fun to me, but now it is a huge part of my life. I would not have it any other way!
How many races have you completed?
I have no idea! I have completed 2 marathons (both the Richmond Marathon, which I love) and 19 half marathons. I will be completing #20 in Dallas at the Rock and Roll Half in March. I have run so many other shorter distance races (10 miler, 10K, 5-miler, 5K) over the past 9 years that I have lost count!
How long have you been running?
I started running in the summer of 2007, but I did not really consistently run until 2008. That’s when I really started to enjoy it and ran what seemed like a 5K every weekend to try and get in shape and work off the college weight I had gained. I did not quite have the motivation to run if it was not a race, so these local 5K’s kept me accountable and moving.
What is your favorite distance to run and why?
My favorite race distance is a ten miler. I find that I tucker out at about mile 11 and the last two miles of a half marathon are brutal. The ten miler for me is great. It is long enough that I can pace myself slow and steady, but short enough that I do not run into the “wall”.
What is your best training tip?
Find a plan that works best for you and change it to make yourself successful AND be sure to surround yourself with a great supportive team. Knowing that others are cheering for you and supporting you can be the extra motivation you need when in a slump or unmotivated!
What keeps you motivated?
My kids at home and at school keep me motivated. My two children at home know how much I love running and now they like to get involved as well in Kiddie K’s as well as being pushed in the stroller. At school, my students often ask me about running pictures or a race bib they may see on my bulletin board. I hope that my running inspires others to lace up and give themselves a hobby that betters their lives like it has mine!
What advice would you give someone who is just starting on his or her fitness journey?
Do not compare yourself to others. It is so easy to get caught up in other people’s paces and distances but you have to remember it is YOUR journey. The beauty of running is that we all cross the same finish line, so enjoy it, embrace it and know that YOU did your best! Life is your race so run your pace along the way.
To learn more about Kristen or her sister Courtney, head over to their blog or find them on Facebook.