December 12 2017
Meet Rhonda-Marie and Steven Parke, two ultrarunners who discovered their love for each other through running.
This week’s Women’s Running magazine Blogger On The Run is a hardworking mom and trained counselor hoping to give back to everyone affected by the Boston Marathon tragedy. Meet Laura from Mommy Run Fast – she gathered dozens of volunteer counselors and social workers who are willing to listen to anyone who is still feeling anxious or needs to talk through the events in Boston. Read Laura’s story and find out how to get help here. . .
Women’s Running: How would you describe yourself?
Laura: I’m a (mostly) stay at home mom, with a background in social work (MSW). I’m now a part-time holistic health coach, and recently began coaching other runners as well (RRCA certified). I teach spin at our local YMCA, and love all things health and fitness related, as well as baking, family time, singing and dancing with my three year old and dark chocolate.
WR: How did you begin running?
L: Some friends and I started running casually in college for fun, and one of them suggested we train together for the Philly half marathon. That was the first race for any of us, and it was such a blast! I was hooked on running after that.
WR: What keeps you running and training?
L: Running has become a part of who I am- and I love it! After my daughter was born, I took it more seriously. I decided to train for my first marathon (Poconoes) and then wanted to qualify for Boston. Setting new goals keeps me motivated right now- I love racing against myself.
WR: What type of run is your favorite?
L: I’m finally becoming more consistent with track workouts, and they have quickly become my favorite. I connected with a running group that hits the track together which keeps me motivated. I sometimes dread it, but always feel so accomplished afterwards!
WR: What’s your favorite race memory?
L: Running the Houston marathon this year was a highlight. I ran most of the first half with a good friend, and then let her take off but I stayed consistent and got the BQ time I had trained for, which felt amazing. It was also special because several friends were along the course, and I saw my husband and daughter (in her Elmo costume) twice. And I didn’t crash at mile 20 as I did in my first marathon, so I actually enjoyed the whole race. I didn’t know that was possible in a marathon!
WR: What’s your favorite indulgent treat?
L: Anything sweet. I have a huge sweet tooth and have been taming it this last year, but that’s definitely the first place I indulge! Ice cream, brownies, anything with chocolate in it… mmm.
WR: Do you have a running mantra?
L: The one I use the most is “you are stronger than you think you are” – if we believe in ourselves, we can do more than we think we can. Confidence and determination can go a long way.
WR: Are you currently training for a race? If so, which one?
K: I’m taking a few months to focus on 5ks and 10ks for a change. I have one of each in May. Then I’ll be training for the Philadelphia marathon in November, with 1-2 half marathons this summer and fall. And I’m hoping to run Boston next year, especially in light of the tragedy last week. It will be an emotional but powerful experience!
WR: Best running advice you’ve received or given?
L: Listen to your body. And no comparing! (Race times, training plans, weekly mileage)- find and do what works for you.
Want to read more? Head over to Mommy Run Fast!