Thursday, August 4, 2011

Thumbs Up Thursday...Kerrie

This week's spotlight is on Kerrie of  MOM VS MARATHON: HOW TO RUN A MARATHON AND A HOUSEHOLD WITHOUT LOSING YOUR MIND (here).  Once you read her interview stop on over to her blog and say hello!

Jodi:   How long have you been running?
Kerrie:  This is hard for me to answer. You can break my running life up in two parts: high school and present day.  In high school, and even before, I ran a lot. I ran to train for sports, like soccer and basketball, but I was also on the track and cross country teams. After high school, I occasionally ran around the campus or on the track at Washington State University, or I ran during intramural soccer games. After that, though, I didn’t run much at all (except for a few months before my wedding when I was losing weight). Typically, I would get the urge to run, it would last a few days, and then I’d get “too busy” to go anymore.
Kerrie in her sweet cross country uniform in high school
 I didn’t know what busy meant. Now, I am way too busy, but I still fit running into my life. I started running “for real” on July 18, 2009, to get back into shape. So, if we are talking about present-day running, then
it’s been just over two years.

Jodi:  Why did you start running?
Kerrie:  I began running again in 2009 because I was overweight and out of shape – I gained about 60 pounds during my pregnancy and lost what little muscle I’d had. In my lower back, a bulging disc was causing me to be in pain 24x7, making everything difficult. I was also depressed. There was talk of
surgery, but it wasn’t a guarantee that the disc would not rupture again, so I opted to get healthy instead (the disc can usually heal itself if you give it time). A cortisone shot around my sciatic nerve – where the disc
was pushing up against – helped me get some relief in the short-term, then I began walking. During my walks, I would dream about running like I used to when I was younger. One day, I tentatively tried a few strides in my flip flops and it didn’t hurt. I went home, decided to train for a marathon (a dream I’d had when I was younger), and started a blog to keep myself motivated.
Kerrie a couple of weeks before she began running in 2009

Jodi:  How many years have you been racing?
Kerrie:  I raced in high school on the track (the mile, which I sucked at – it’s a sprint!) and the cross country team (which was much more my thing). If I remember correctly, our girls varsity cross country team, which I was on during my junior year, placed first in state that year. I wasn’t a top runner, but I was number 5 or something. I think my best 3-mile time was 21-something.  My first race of my present-day running life was a 10K in October 2009. I signed up because a friend who inspires me was running it. My first half marathon, also inspired by her, was the following month.
Jodi:  What is your favorite distance to race and why?
Kerrie:  I really like the half marathon because it’s a challenge mentally and physically, but training doesn’t take away much time from family like a full marathon.
Jodi:  What is your favorite race memory?
Kerrie:  My favorite race memory is from my full marathon: My husband called me around Mile 19 to tell me that he and my son, who is 3, were there. My son wanted to talk to me. He said, “Hi, Mommy. Are you running the race?” in his little munchkin voice and my heart nearly exploded. I also loved rounding the south end of Qwest Field and seeing my son and my husband at Mile 26.
Kerrie, her hubs, and her son after the marathon

Jodi:  What is your least favorite race memory?
Kerrie:  Crossing the finish line of my first half marathon (Nov. 2009).  I had told my husband to stay home with our son – he was about 30 months at the time.  I’d thought it would be too stressful on them and me to fight the crowds to be there, but I really wish I’d had someone there. I was very sad when I crossed the finish line and was all alone, and I really had to pee!
Jodi:  What is your proudest running moment to date?
Kerrie:  Finishing my first full marathon with a friend, a huge smile on my face and energy left in the tank. It was a wonderful experience and I can’t wait to do it again! 
Kerrie in the shorts running her first marathon with the first runner she met through blogging (Zoe of Run, Zoe, Run)

Jodi:  What one item do you absolutely have to have with you on a training run?
Kerrie:  My phone – it’s my blankie. I feel safer with it, plus it has my music on it.
Jodi:  What is your favorite fuel during a race?
Kerrie:  I ate a full peanut butter and jelly sandwich about 30 minutes before my last two races (full marathon and half marathon) and it was a success!  During the full, I only needed to fuel with gels 5 times (I took one every hour and then one around Mile 24). I like Hammer Gels the best, then Power Bar Gels. GU is a little thick for my taste, but I can manage with it.  During the half, I did not need to refuel at all. I experimented during my long runs recently: one full PB&J before a 10-miler and there were no gels needed; one half of a PB&J before an 11-miler and I need a gel BADLY around Mile 7. I also drink Nuun during my races and long runs – no plain water for me.
Jodi:  What is your favorite post race snack?
Kerrie:  After the North Olympic Discovery Half Marathon in 2010, they had croissants and Nutella. It was awesome. They also had Top Ramen, which scored high with me. But, the best thing I’ve found post-race is chocolate milk – thanks to it, I did not pass out after my first half.
Jodi:  Who do you admire most and why?
Kerrie:  I really admire people who have had to overcome some sort of physiologica barrier to running, be it weight, injuries, illnesses or body mechanics.  So…pretty much every runner!
Jodi:  Do you have a favorite quote?
Kerrie:  Not really. I like quotes and find them inspirational, but I don’t really have a famous go-to quote. I do, however, say to myself often, “Don’t think about it, just do it.” This, obviously, should not be applied in all situations in life, but it works for me when it comes to something I’ve been putting off, whether it’s exercise or writing. I tend to overthink things and get weighed down by the thought of doing it before I’ve done anything at all. It can be paralyzing. I need to not think about it and just do it.
Jodi:  Finish this statement, when I run I feel…
Kerrie:  Free. I’m not a wife, a mom, a writer. I’m just a runner.
Jodi:  What is your current goal?
Kerrie:  Sub-2-hour half in September, baby! It’s mine!  Also running the Hood to Coast Relay this month on a team sponsored by Nuun with a ton of other bloggers. :)

Jodi:  Feel free to add anything else that you think will help others lace up their shoes and get out there and run.
Kerrie:  I just want to add that having friends that are runners really helps me stay motivated and makes running so fun! So, my advice to new runners would be to find a local running club or a store that has a running group and join!

All friends Kerrie has met through blogging!
Thanks again for the opportunity to give you a Thumbs Up Kerrie!  Best of luck achieving your current goals!

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


  1. Thanks so much for featuring me! It was fun!

  2. Kerrie is just the best, isn't she!?!?!

  3. My heart nearly explodes every time I see my son during a race, too! Nice interview!