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May 2018-Jessie Fahlgren

Q: How long have you been running and how did you get started?

A: I started running when I was in the 7th grade and somehow was persuaded to join the cross country team despite my dislike of running. I ran a bit in high school, then off and on until about 2015 when I decided to get serious and train for a half marathon. What really made me want to start running seriously was reading a bunch of training books, then realizing that I could actually apply all the exercise physiology stuff that I thought was so interesting to my training.

Q: Would you rather run with a group or alone?

A: If I could run with other people all the time, I would! Most of my training is alone, so it’s always great when I find people to run with.

Q: Do you prefer roads or trails?  

A: Trails all day, every day. I still do a lot of road miles, but trails are my favorite.

Q: What is your favorite distance or race?

A: Right now I’m all about running a fast marathon, so probably 26.2!

Q: How do you stay motivated when you don’t want to run?

A: For me, it’s more about dedication and consistency than motivation. I’m only motivated to run about 46.37% of the time, so the rest is just knowing that I won’t get better if I don’t log miles consistently.

Q: If I didn’t run I’d ………..

A: have to seriously rethink my dietary habits!

Q: What do you find to be the most rewarding thing about running?

A: Getting into that flow state where the miles are just clicking away, I can tell I’m working but it’s not too hard, and my mind just goes blank for awhile and I don’t have to think about anything.

Q: What is your favorite running memory?

A: Probably the point of the 50 miler at the Black Hills races last June when I realized that I was definitely going to actually finish the race!

Q: Do you have a pre-race ritual?

A: Current pre-race ritual: check in, warm up miles that end in a panicked near sprint for no real reason, change out of warmup shoes into racing shoes (right shoe on first always, triple knot), half-hearted leg swings, some fake stretches, then just anxious pacing and bouncing up and down on the balls of my feet while checking my watch a million times to make sure the gps is connected until the actual start. …it could use some work.

Q: What’s the most valuable lesson you have learned from running?

A: Just doing a little bit every day eventually adds up to something big, even if it doesn’t seem like it.

Q: What are your running goals for the future?

A: Somehow survive 100 miles. Beer mile. Drag myself through a marathon fast enough to qualify for Boston. Boston. Run a 5k and have a finish time that I’m not embarrassed to tell people.

Q: Who inspires you most?

A: Pretty much all the big names in women’s marathoning: Shalane, Desi, Molly Huddle…etc. I may or may not have a shirt with Shalane finishing New York on it that I wear for workouts as a sort of inspiration to work hard.

Q: What advice do you have for new runners?

A: Be patient. Pay attention to the little things like stretching & strength training & injury prevention. Don’t compare yourself to others.