Resides in: Bethlehem
Years running: sporadically for 20 years, consistently for the past 8-10 years
Bio: I am 42, married and have one son who my husband and I homeschool. I am also a physical therapist. Running became my primary for of exercise after my son was born, because it was a way to get in a quick workout. I ran the occasional 5k, but nothing serious. I decided to train for a marathon in 2003, never thinking that I would like it as much as I did. Since then, I have run several marathons and half-marathons. Because of a stress fracture in my femur 2 years ago, I now run 3 days/week and ride the bike trainer 3x/week. I have been injury-free since adapting this routine.
What do you enjoy most about running?
I usually run alone and I really enjoy it as a meditative time. It clears my head and refreshes me.
What are your favorite training foods?
I use Hammer nutrition as my primary training fuel. I have no special training foods but I generally eat a clean and well-balanced diet and avoid processed foods.
What is your biggest running accomplishment and why?
Qualifying for the Boston Marathon was definitely my proudest moment in my running career. Actually running Boston was a thrill too, of course!
Favorite race distance?
Probably a tie between the marathon and half-marathon. I like running the marathon distance but like training for the half-marathon better.
Best piece of running advice you’ve ever received?
“If you’re not throwing up at the end, you didn’t run hard enough” advice given to me (jokingly) by my husband Scott who is an exercise physiologist.
Joan Benoit Samuelson and Cathy Switzer
Current running goals?
For the first time in several years I have nothing specific that I am training for. That means it’s time to pick my next marathon!
What are some things you’ve learned about yourself from running?
That I am mentally tougher than I ever would have thought! And that I like running in cold weather.
Best race experience?
I really enjoyed the Pocono marathon which I ran in 2009–a great course, well-organized and great spectators and volunteers. Also where I qualified for Boston!