The Miles + Pace runner’s community truly motivates us each time we're on social media to hit our miles and continue running because we can! We were so inspired we decided to launch a "Fit Friday" spotlight on the amazing people in our Miles + Pace fam.
Jessica inspires us with her dedication to running and positive attitude, despite her battle with fibromyalgia. We chatted with Jessica to find out more about her passion for running, her quest for health and her NYC Marathon training.
What inspired you to get into running?
In September of 2014, I began my running journey. I had just gotten married in June and I was looking for something new aside from the same old routine of going to the gym. I can't really say that anything in particular inspired me to start running. I guess you could say I inspired myself. I was determined to keep going even if it was just a mile a night but then, it turned into more! MUCH more! I wanted to see just how much I was capable of!
How often do you run?
I run just about every day, taking rest days as I see fit. During the week I run three miles before going to work and on the weekends, I run five miles on Saturdays and whatever my long run mileage is on Sundays!
What's been the most difficult aspect of your running practice?
The most difficult aspect of my running practice so far was being diagnosed with fibromyalgia in March of 2016. In January I had began to see my health decline and after A LOT of testing, blood work, doctors appointments, etc. I was diagnosed. Today I still continue to struggle as new symptoms arise BUT I refuse to let this illness define me! I worked hard to get where I am at with my running so each morning I get up and fight like hell to keep going!
When you don't feel like running, what motivates you to lace up and get out there?
When I don't feel like running my main motivation to lace up and get out there is myself and people like me who fight these terrible illnesses every day! I run for those who can't because although I have fibromyalgia, I am still able to run and that is a blessing I'll never take for granted!
How many races have you run?
I have ran countless 5k's and 10k's as well as nine half marathons and one marathon!
What's been your favorite race? Why?
My favorite race so far was the NYC half! I put my name in for the lottery and was chosen to run it just by pure luck! I love the city so i was stoked to know I'd be running the half. The best part by far, was stopping traffic in Times Square! As I ran through I saw my husband and sister cheering me on and that brought tears to my eyes. The course was amazing as was the crowd support! I now look forward to running the NYC marathon in November!
What's been your least favorite race? Why?
My least favorite race was a local 10k I did that was really poorly organized. Not only that, but the day I ran it, it was the most cold and windy weather which made for an absolutely brutal race!
What do you love about running?
Simply put, EVERYTHING! I love waking up at 4:30 AM every morning and running the streets by my house while everyone is still sleeping. I love chasing the sunrise and hearing the birds chirping as I run. I love the thrill of racing and the challenge. I love the short runs and the long runs. I love training for races and the feeling come race day, knowing how much blood, sweat, and tears went into the training! Running is my passion, it is everything to me!
Anything else you'd like to share about yourself, your journey and your runs!
Currently I am training for the NYC marathon in November as well as the Dopey Challenge in January. These are two challenging races that I know will take A LOT of blood, sweat, and tears. Not only that, but the thing I don't think most people realize is that as runners we make A LOT of sacrifices! Early mornings, missed time with family and friends, missed parties and BBQ's, etc. For me, as a runner, it's all 100% worth it come race day!