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April 2015 – Carisa Gerving

Q. Where are you from originally and what are you doing now?

A. I was born on the Ellsworth Air Force Base and I have lived in Rapid City the majority of my life. I have worked for Child Protection Services for 7 years.

Q. What do you do when you’re not running?

A. I like to start my day off right by going to the gym. I lift weights or complete a Jillian Michael’s DVD workout. All of my other spare time is dedicated to my husband and children.

Q. How long have you been running and how did you get started? How long have you been a BHRC member?

A. About 5 years ago I became friends with a new coworker. She was new to South Dakota and she really wanted to complete the Mickelson Half Marathon. I could only run about a mile at the time. I agreed to train because I thought it would help me lose weight for my upcoming
wedding. My friend and I started training regularly and we became very close. I remember thinking there was no way in hell I would get my mileage up to 13. But every week as our mileage increased it was a personal victory. I can still clearly remember the day I first ran 10 miles. My friend and I were not ready to complete the Mickelson half marathon but we did start a relay team. My first half marathon was in Fort Collins, Colorado in September of 2010. After my first race, I was addicted to racing! I have now run 7 half marathon races. This is my first year as a Black Hills Runner’s Club member.

Q. Would you rather run with a group or train alone? Do you listen to music?

A. I have trained alone and I have trained with a friend or a group. By far I prefer training with a
partner. I find that I push myself when I have a partner to hold me accountable. My current
running partner Tanya Septka and I tackle some gnarly hills that I would not have the courage to run alone. We have nicknamed the worst hill “heart attack hill.” I do listen to music. It helps distract me when I am alone or on a long run. I also download new upbeat tunes for each race.

Q. What is your favorite distance or race? Are you currently training for anything?

A. My favorite distance is the half marathon. I am currently training for the Dam to Dam in Iowa on May 30th. I am also signed up to run the half marathon in Missoula this July. I am contemplating running the half marathon in Bismarck this fall.

Q. Do you have a pre-race ritual? Favorite pig out food?

A. Before a race I like to eat a bowl of cereal and a banana. I also have to have my pre-workout
drink to give me a lift during the race. After a race I love to celebrate with a hamburger and a beer!

Q. Advice for new runners?

A. I tell everyone that if I can run a half marathon then anyone can. I was not a runner in my youth. When I first started training I could barely run a mile. I also have a bone deformity in my leg that makes me look a little funny when I run. A doctor told me he doubted I could run the distance of a half marathon but I proved him wrong. I tell beginners it does not matter if you start out very slow. When I started out I could only run 12 or 13 minute miles. With determination and consistent training you eventually get faster. I also encourage people to find a running partner. They will become your best friend for life!

Q. What are your goals for the future?

A. I want to run a half marathon in as many states as possible.