Every Friday we chat with one of our blog content network contributors to find out what most inspires them to be fit and find adventure every day.
This week we’re chatting with Angela from RunnerInDenial.com.
Since 2009 Angela has completed many road races, including four marathons. Only, her first full marathon happened completely by accident. Before that, she hardly considered herself a true runner, and sometimes she’s still in denial (hence, the name of her blog) about the fact that she’s been sucked into a sport that she once despised.
Read more to find out her best piece of advice for beginners, how she maintains motivation and how she successfully overcame an injury and began running again just four months after surgery.
The Active Times: How did you first become involved in running?
Angela: Once I began working full-time, it became really difficult to find motivation to get myself to the gym. As someone who could barely run a mile, I registered for a half-marathon to give myself a major fitness goal to work toward. The finish line euphoria is real and addicting, apparently, as I went to register myself for another half-marathon almost immediately. However, I mistakenly registered myself for a full marathon (whoops!) and the rest is history.
What are the wisest words you ever heard about running?
It's probably a tie between "think of your training schedule as being written in pencil" and "don't be the idiot who jogs at the stop lights." Both were said to me by a world renowned marathon runner.
What is the greatest joy you get from running?
Seeing my parents cheer for me at races. If you saw my mother cheering on the sidelines, you'd think I were winning.
What's one thing many people don't know about running?
That even for seasoned runners, it's not always easy. I don't enjoy every run and I sometimes even dread going for one. It can be a love-hate relationship at times.
What's the biggest challenge you've had to overcome while running?
In 2012, I suffered from ITBS for so long that I ended up having knee surgery that August. I was determined to come back physically and mentally stronger and took my rehab extremely seriously. Four months after surgery, I ran a half-marathon and a year post-surgery I ran my fastest marathon yet in Chicago.
What advice would you give someone trying running for the first time?
Don't be discouraged when it's not easy right away. Go slow, try a walk/run, increase distance gradually. Eventually, it gets easier and may even be fun.
If money were no object, what piece of kit or equipment would you buy?
An ElliptiGO! Although, money isn't really the object here, space is! My tiny NYC apartment barely has space for me let alone a gigantic elliptical on wheels.
Are you passionate about any activities besides running?
Reading! I probably go through about 2-3 books a week. I bring my Kindle everywhere to try and sneak in a few minutes of reading when I can. I love crime/mystery books.
What is at the top of your bucket list when it comes to running?
Run an international marathon. I'd love to do all the World Majors (I've already knocked off two!) so perhaps I could head to Berlin, London or Tokyo next.
What, if anything, did you recently knock off your bucket list?
I'm currently working on getting through some summer bucket list items. One item was to do something touristy in NYC. I've been in NY my entire life and I sometimes feel like I haven't done any of the main tourist attractions. Last week, I went on a boat cruise around Manhattan, visited the Statue of Liberty, and took all the quintessential tourist photos.