Beginning a Running Journey: Genae’s Interview

I have been following this incredible and inspiring mama’s successful journey as she turned to fitness as an outlet and embarked on a new endeavor —becoming a runner! I asked her a few questions to understand how she got there. Get to know Genae a little better from her Real Mama interview too.

You are a true inspiration to many mamas, training for several races! When did you start?

My journey began May 12, 2012 when a friend of mine asked if I would like to join her and her coworkers run the Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure 5k. This would be our first race, let alone running at all in 10 years. So I thought I needed some running gear.

I went and ordered a pink cancer support outfit from Kohl’s and some cute pink Fila Skeletoes to go with my cute outfit. (Tip: don’t ever wear brand new shoes on race day. I have to admit, while I ran/walked the race I became an emotional roller coaster, my feet were hurting with blisters from my new shoes, silly me.)

Part of me was so happy that I was actually running a race and the other part was thinking “what were you thinking and how much further?” As I ran the course, I saw young kids and moms with strollers that made it seem so effortless. I was so excited to be part of such an important race and to see so many run for their loved ones, as well as survivors running for themselves.

I ran my first race in 41 minutes and then had the running bug. My friend and I decided we would run a race every month and this would help us get our butts in gear to get fit. We did exactly that, but realized it would not be enough to be conditioned for these races.

I found a great running group in our area called “Black Girls Run”. Women meet up and run together (you don’t have to be black to join but you must be a girl, I get asked this all the time. lol). What a great group of ladies! They are so encouraging, motivating, and inspiring. The one thing that stood out with these ladies was that many of them were seasoned runners and passed by me at my first meet up and gave me a thumbs up and yelled out “great job” as they went by. When I finished my first three miles with the group, they waited for every woman to finish up their run and clapped you in (no woman left behind). All I can say is I was hooked!

What motivated you to start training for a half-marathon?

I have run many 5Ks and one 10K. Then I was inspired by my fellow running buddies who shared stories of their marathon races and the journeys to get there. I decided that would be me one day. So in 2013, I will run my first half marathon. I will be running The Divas Half Marathon in Myrtle Beach on April 28; 13.1 miles. I’m not sure if I’ll do a full marathon someday, but we will see after I complete my first half.

You are an incredibly busy woman with a large family, how do you find the time?

I find for myself; if I don’t have me time, then I cannot be the best wife and mother for my family. When I run, I run to clear my head, to get peace of mind, and to get fit. So I try to make sure I schedule my days by a calendar. Since I work for myself and have a very supportive husband, I work my working schedule around activities for the kids, family, and me time.

Do you have any advice for mamas thinking about starting to train for a race?

The best advice I can give any mama training for a race is:

  1. Try to find a workout buddy who has similar goals, you will inspire each other and push each other at the same time.
  2. Make sure you get fitted for the proper running shoes at a professional running store.
  3. Stay hydrated.
  4. Make sure you cross-train, it’s important you add strength training to the mix.
  5. Never wear or try anything new on race day, train in what you plan to wear on that day.
  6. The most important advice I can give is to run your race— no one else’s.

Did you follow a specific training program or do your own thing?

I started using a program on Runner’s World but then tweaked it to my schedule:

Every Monday, I run four miles, on Tuesday I cross train, on Wednesday I run four miles, Thursday is my rest day, on Friday I run five miles, on Saturday I run four miles and on Sunday, I cross train.

Every Friday I up the mileage until I can run 13 miles to reach my goal (Fridays are my long runs).

Do you participate in any other fitness activities?

I play kickball on an all-women’s kick ball team and I love it! I thought this was another way to get fit and have some fun at the same time.

What has been your most rewarding experience as you have turned to fitness?

My most rewarding experience from turning to fitness is all of the messages I get from friends telling me I have inspired them to get fit and how they have lost weight watching my journey on Facebook.

I started at 170 lbs and now weigh 148.

All I can say is CONGRATULATIONS Mama! We will be cheering you on as you continue your racing career.

Check out some other mamas and their fitness journeys: April’s Journey, Kelly’s Journey. And stay tuned for more!

4 Responses to Beginning a Running Journey: Genae’s Interview

  1. You are definitely inspiring Genae! So amazing to see your transformation. You simply ooze confidence and fun!

  2. Such an inspiring story! Great job mama!

  3. Thank you!!!

  4. Pingback: Fitting in Fitness: Kelly's Interview Mama Say What?! | Mama Say What?!

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