Q: Tell me a little bit about yourself. (Where you’re from, what you’re doing
A: I was born and raised in Rapid City and although I left for a while after high school, I realized this is home and came back in 2009. Eric and I will be celebrating our four year anniversary in October and we try to play as hard and as often as we can! I’m still in the travel industry and will have been with Bursch Travel for ten years this month.
Q: How long have you been running and how did you get started?
A: By definition, I am still a newbie. I have been running since 2018 when Kayla Silver somehow convinced me that running a 30k would be ‘fun.’ Turns out she wasn’t wrong and here I am today with a few 30k’s and then some under my belt.
Q: Would you rather run with a group or alone?
A: There are definitely good points to both. I love the camaraderie of being with a friend or two and that accountability gets me through training. However, there are definitely times when blasting tunes and just going out solo is the best.
Q: Do you prefer roads or trails?
A: I love both. I appreciate being able to just leave the house to gather a couple of concrete miles on the bike path but I started on trails and will always love being in nature and trying not to get lost!
Q: What is your favorite distance or race?
A: I love to crank out a 5k in the AM with the gals but when it comes to a race, I really enjoy just about anything longer than that. I feel like the first three milesare the hardest three and it takes me a few to really find my groove.
Q: How do you stay motivated when you don’t want to run?
A: I used to think that just showing up was all it took to be a runner and complete events. While that isn’t entirely wrong, I have come to see how vastly different your results can be when you train properly and stick to a routine. I was lucky to work with a trainer last year before completing my first marathon and I was blown away with my results just by sticking to it. You may not want to somedays, but thinking of what you’ll achieve if you do helps get your shoes on and get you out the door!
Q: If I didn’t run I’d ………..
A: Need to reconsider that second beer.
Q: What do you find to be the most rewarding thing about running?
A: Earning more beer than non-runners.
Q: What is your favorite running memory?
A: My biggest moment was completing my first marathon. As I rounded the corner off Spearfish Canyon and started heading to the park, I was hurting like hell and wondering why anyone would do this on purpose, my dad caught up to me to on his bicycle, rolled along next to me and started shouting encouragement. “It’s like Nascar, Jess, you finish this thing with an empty tank, now let’s go!” Lucky for him and my pacer, Mandi, they were both out of slapping distance and they drove me to cross that finish well before my goal time. I earned extra beers that day.
Q: Do you have a pre-race ritual?
A: Mexican and half a gallon of OJ. Maybe that’s a riskyrecipe for gut rot, but after completing my first full marathon, a couple 30k’s and a few shorter jaunts after a night of binging on enchiladas, I don’t think I will be skipping out on endless chips and salsa before any major event!
Q: What is one of your funniest running stories?
A: Last June during the virtual series I had one last distance to finish, the Runkle Road. Three of us gals headed out one evening to get it done and knowing there was a good chance for hail, we hawk-eyed the radar all day and went for it! Three separate vehicles stopped and expressed concern for our well-being (or maybe mental state) but we explained to them, “we know, but we have an alley!” Sure enough, in less than two miles we were hiding in the trees, using our water vests as helmets and wondering if we were totally nuts! Soaked to the bone and slightly bruised, we headed back for the car and those less than deserved, but much needed brews.
Q: What are your running goals for the future?
A: There is this group of crazies that I hang out with that think we should be tackling a 50k next year. I could be convinced….
Q: Who inspires you most?
A: All of these amazing people in the BHRC. I love seeing everyone succeed and smash their goals! I love the challenges they take on and how they inspire me to conquer my goals. I love being a part of this community!
Q: What advice do you have for new runners?
A: It never gets easier, you just get faster. Be patient, be consistent and results will follow.