Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thumbs Up Thursday...Chelsea

This week's spotlight is on Chelsea of Will Run For Food (here).  Once you read her interview head on over to her blog and give her a shout out!!

Jodi:  How long have you been running?
Chelsea:  I started running in March 2010 – in a Couch to 5k class. The week before the class, I tried to run a city block. I couldn’t. :\

Jodi:  Why did you start running?
Chelsea:  I haaaaaaated running growing up. ‘Running is stupid’, I would say. I was a bowler, goshdarnit. My sister signed up for a C25K class in January of 2010, and wanted me to sign up with her. I declined, using the ‘Running is stupid’ claim. A friend who was listening in on our conversation, basically said ‘Yeah, you wouldn’t stick with it anyways’.

Harsh…but so VERY true!

My entire family knows I’m very good at starting projects. Not so good at finishing them. I find a new hobby – be it exercise or dieting or cooking or crafts. I run out, buy all of the stuff, stick with it for about a week…then it fades away. Gets shoved into my closet. Gets donated to Goodwill.

So, doing the next cycle of the class – and sticking with the running – was like a dare to myself. I DARE you to get out there. DARE you to get out there when you really don’t feel like it. DARE you to do what you couldn’t do last week.

It then turned into a way to lose weight for the first time in my life. Wheee! (Plus, I get to run in some pretty awesome locations around my house)

Jodi:  How many years have you been racing?
Chelsea:  My first race was the Top Pot Doughnut Dash 5k in May 2010. I actually haven’t done many races, usually because I get hurt or forget to sign up for them. WHOOPS.

Jodi:  What is your favorite distance to race and why?
Chelsea:  Well. I’ve only done a 5k, 10k, and a Half. 5k’s are fun because you can go all-out and sprint and generally act like a bad-ass all day. “Yeah, I ran a 5k this morning. No biggie.”

Even though I’ve only run one, I really do love the half marathon. You get some ups, some downs, and some good stories to tell. Plus, depending on the course, you could get to see your course-support more than once. :)

I will say I think my favorite kind of race is a mud run. Beer? Getting dirty? AWWWW YEAH

Jodi:  What is your favorite race memory?
Chelsea:  Crossing the finish at my first 5k. I had been going back & forth with this older lady for most of the race. I saw her walking in the final chutes, grabbed her hand, and we ran to the finish. I could barely breathe, but damn if I didn’t just go 3.1 miles.

Jodi:  What is your least favorite race memory?
Chelsea:  That’s easy – my hip locking up during my Half Marathon a few weeks ago. I’ve been dealing with a nagging hip injury for almost two months now. I’m not 100%, but wanted to race anyways. It’s annoying because the only thing I can do for the hip is rest.

And forced rest is almost as painful as the injury itself!

I knew I just had to get to the finish of the race – I’d crawl if I needed to!

I’m kind of, in a sick, sad way, glad it happened. I was worried I wouldn’t have ‘it’ during the race. You know, the ‘race until you barf’ in me. Turns out I had it and then some. I’d take barfing over that pain any day.

Jodi:  What is your proudest running moment to date?
Chelsea:  This is a good one. Every minute I run I’m proud of myself. I’m going to have two moments.
1) I love being able to tell people that I ran 13 miles. 13 seems like such an unattainable number for many people, but it’s actually rather easy to get to if you train for it. When I started training for my first half, so many people at work saw me heading out for my lunchtime run that 5 people signed up for the race too and trained on their own – many of them admitting to me when they signed up that there was no way they could ever run 13 miles.

2) Running a half marathon during a training run by myself. I used my house as a water station and sang a song to some Canadian Geese near the end. The hardest part for running for me is the mental battle. Doing this run toughened me up like nothing else had to that point.

Jodi:  What one item do you absolutely have to have with you on a training run?
Chelsea:  My necklace I wear everyday. When I run, it’s in my right side skirt pocket. If I don’t have a skirt on, it’s tucked around into my left bra strap. There’s three charms on it – one from my mom, one from my sister, and one from me, with my dad’s birthday & day he passed away on it. It’s my family. They run with me.

Oh, and gum.

If I’m running at lunch? On the sunny waterfront? Cash and my ID, kthx.

Jodi:  What is your favorite fuel during a race?
Chelsea:  I’ve trained with a Gu before I run and Gu Chomps during. I’ve also had ¼ of a PB&J sandwich, and I really liked that. I’m an after-work runner, so I’m not running on empty like some of you morning runners! (My stomach hates me in the morning. When I do have to run in the mornings it’s a wee bit horrible.)

Jodi:  What is your favorite post race snack?
Chelsea:  If it’s a short run, Nuun and beer. Separately. :) And for food, shredded potatoes topped with 2 eggs over-easy – fried in 1 tbsp butter. NOM.

Long runs – nothing. This is bad. I can’t stomach food after long runs. It feels like my stomach and throat are closed for business. I can usually get down some plain, room-temperature water and maybe part of an apple. My lack of appetite continues through the rest of the day. :\ This is probably one of the bigger challenges I have while trying to balance life and running – it’s hard to run on ‘E’ for one full day a week.

Jodi:  Who do you admire most and why?
Chelsea:  I think near the top of my list are all of the running moms out there. I have a good number of friends I’ve met through blogging that are all mothers first, runners second. Yeah, my job keeps me pretty busy, but I couldn’t imagine having a kid (or kids), trying to train AND keeping everyone fed and clothed!

Jodi:  Do you have a favorite quote?
Chelsea:  No, actually. The thing that is always running in my head is ‘What goes around, comes around.’ It’s how I live my life and what I chant to myself when I’m getting knocked around.

Jodi:  Finish this statement, when I run I feel___________.
Chelsea:  Powerful. Humbled.

I’m reminded every run that there was a point in time where I couldn’t do what I am now doing. That I didn’t think I had it in me – mentally or physically.

Jodi:  What is your current goal?
Chelsea:  Racing – the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco. The goal for that race is to not die and to better my time.

Running - …to run more. I’m admitting it out in the open. I’m a run/walker. I’ve never run more than a mile and a half without walking. So. Uh. I want to change that. :)

Thanks again for the opportunity to give you a Thumbs Up Chelsea!  Best of luck achieving your current goals!!

Keep running, you're simply the best, and Chelsea YOU inspire ME!!


  1. Chelsea - great story! Congrats on the half! And I loved this quote of yours "Yeah, I ran a 5k this morning. No biggie." lol

  2. Awesome interview! Way to go Chelsea on finishing your first half and going big with SF for your second.

  3. Hi Chelsea! I love all your cute skirts! And I'm jealous over your ability to run on your lunch hour. How do you do it?? I'd come back beet red in the face and all stinky.

  4. Love this...great to learn about you more chelsea!

  5. Tears, Chels. So darn proud of you! Thanks for featuring Chelsea!

  6. Great article Chelsea! btw, I always see lots of people do the run/walk method. Sooo, lots of people must be doing something right :)

  7. Such a change from the first photo to the last. It seems like you truly feel as good as you look! Right on, dude.