Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sexy Mother Runner Featured Runner Friday: Meet Cathy!

Every runner has a story. At Sexy Mother Runner, we believe that 
sharing those stories is a great way to share the gift of 
running while helping to motivate others.

Today's Featured Runner is our friend, Cathy. I still remember the first time I formally met Cathy. I was running with her Dad at Team Steam (a local running training program). He told me his name and I asked if his daughter was the speedy Cathy that I had heard about through friends. Of course it was and at that moment she lived up to her reputation. She was the first woman sprinting back from our out and back course!
 Cathy has a sincere dedication to running. You won't want to miss reading Cathy's (AKA Speedy Gonzalez) story!

Meet Cathy:

I started running my Junior year of high school and wanted to be a sprinter like the rest of my friends.  After the coach broke the news to me that I was not a sprinter he put me in the 800.  At the time I was not competitive and ran it with a friend for fun.  My Senior year I joined cross country where I developed my love of running after finding I had some pretty good endurance and speed.

I went on to attend Purdue University where I kept running on my own, but the running clubs on campus left me feeling like I needed more.  That’s when I contacted the cross country coach and told him I wanted to try out for the team.  He basically told me if I was already on campus I didn’t stand a chance of making the team.  I asked for the Summer workouts and told him I would see him in the Fall for tryouts.  I walked on the team having few expectations and being completely intimidated by some of the really fast girls.  After a few weeks of try outs I made the team and went on to compete against other Division 1 athletes.  Running at that level is something I will hold on to forever.

Cathy and her adorable girls!
Fast forward 9 years later, I kept running during both pregnancies.  I ran 12-15 miles a week until 34 and 35 weeks (my youngest was born one week after I stopped running which came as a surprise).  It sounds crazy…ok it is crazy, but it was worth it!  My labor and pregnancies were pretty good.  To make sure I kept my heart rate at a reasonable level I had my watch alert me anytime I exceeded what I thought was more than I should be doing.  I shed the baby weight pretty quickly with both kids as a result of staying in shape during pregnancy.  The hardest part about running during pregnancy was that I couldn’t get anyone to tell me a heart rate I should not exceed.  The Internet didn’t have much either, but come to find out few people know what that number is because few people do it. J

Cathy running during the Chicago Marathon
I have run many 5k’s and 10k’s with nearly a dozen half marathons and 2 marathons.   My 5k PR is 20:22 which I set at the Jingle Bell Run December 2010.  I am currently training for the Indianapolis Half Marathon and am hoping to beat my PR (1:37) which I set in August of last year while training for the Chicago Marathon.  Although some people love the marathon, I have resigned myself to the fact that it isn’t for me.  The time commitment and the energy it took to train especially with 2 little ones was too much.  I was training to qualify for Boston and missed it by a long shot (3:54).  I knew all during my training I needed to slow down my long runs, but I didn’t slow enough because everything was pointing in the direction of finishing well under 3:30 and I felt good.  In addition, the night before the marathon I slept maybe 3 hours because of nerves which made things pretty rough.

Cathy's supportive family!
Without the support of my husband I could not be the runner that I am.  He watches our 2 and 4 year old girls while I am out for a run.  I am very flexible with my schedule and am willing to get up early when needed to squeeze in a workout, but the kids get up pretty early and often times it’s barely light out by time they’re up.  He hauls the kids to my races and they cheer me on supporting me along the way.  Being able to get my run in makes me feel like my day is complete.

Along the way I got my dad running which has been a lot of fun because we share running stories and bond over it.  We aren’t nearly the same speed, but it is fun to spontaneously see him out on the trail near my house. 

I hope to be able to call myself a runner for many more years and love what it does for my mind and body.  Being outside getting fresh air either alone or with someone else is something I appreciate and love 
to do in the single digit temperatures to the hot summer days.

 What did you think of Cathy's story? 
Leave her a comment. She would love to hear from you!

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