Where do you consider home?
Enterprise, Alabama is where I consider home. It is where I grew up and my parents and siblings still reside.
How did you learn about Stroller Warriors?
I learned about Stroller Warriors back in the Spring of 2015 from a C25K flyer that had been shared in a spouses group on Facebook.
Tell us about your first Stroller Warriors workout.
After seeing the online flyer I nervously showed up to my first workout not knowing anyone. I was excited to find a workout group that was for moms but, was not much of a runner. At that meetup I found another mom who was joining for the first time too and we chatted during that first run. I didn’t fully commit to running that day but I did continue showing up. It took me until January 2016 before I decided to commit to joining the C25K group. That’s is when I became hooked on running.
What is your favorite season for running?
My favorite season for running is fall. I love getting out and seeing the leaves as they change colors and the cooler temperatures.
When did you fall in love with running?
I fell in love with running sometime during my training for my first half. After going through the C25K program I had my 2nd child. Many of my fellow C25K Warriors were signing up for the Hickman Half. I told my husband about it and we decided to do it together. We would do most of our runs together as a family. I would tell him how crazy I thought people were who did double that and how I couldn’t do that. Little did I realize that the running bug would be hitting me soon and right before we ran that first half I had convinced him to sign up with me for the Honolulu Marathon. He has continued to help push me to go farther and gives me friendly competition in achieving new goals.
Share your most memorable race moment.
My most memorable race moment was the Hapalua Half in 2017. It was our last race in Hawaii before we PCSd and I had a goal in mind. We had already been packed out and by accident I left my watch charger on the counter - yep it got packed. Craig was running it with me and pushing our two boys in the double. Around mile 4 our oldest decided he needed to go potty. I felt like I was watching my goal slip away as I waited with the stroller having no clue what our time was looking like and knowing we still had the hill at diamond head to conquer. We got back on the course and Craig had pushed the boys this whole time. A little over halfway up the hill he looked at me asking if I could take the stroller for a little bit. I reluctantly took it and pushed on around the corner to see the amazing Stroller Warrior cheering section. Craig still likes to tease about how tired he must have looked and how refreshed I seemed even though I was pushing on the hill at that time. He took back over at the top as we made it down and around to the finish line. To my surprise I hit my goal and we were able to celebrate as a family.
Do you have a favorite running distance?
My favorite running distance would be the marathon/50K. I love the challenge of training and getting up early for those weekend long runs. The conversations I’ve been able to share with friends out on a long run are some of the best memories.
What is piece of running gear you could not live without?
My watch would be the one piece of gear I wouldn’t want to do without. I love being able to track and add up my miles for Run the World, use it to push myself a little harder or to make sure I’m taking those easy days easy.
What is your Favorite SW gear?
This is a tough one - it kinda depends on the season. My all-season favorite would be my trucker hats.
What type of running shoes do you wear? Over the years I’ve tried out many different brands/styles. My current go to running shoes are the Altra Torin.
Best running advice you have ever received?
“The time on the clock only tells you how long it took to get from point A to point B…. It doesn’t tell you the profound effort some of those moments will have on you for the rest of your life. -Coach April”
What would you tell someone who wants to join a SW workout, but hadn’t yet.
I was once in your shoes. Even though I attended workouts I wasn’t fully committed. I missed out on a year of great running and fully connecting with some amazing Warriors by watching. SWs truly has a place for everyone and is the best cheer squad around.
Thank you, Jess, for sharing your stories and advice with the Stroller Warriors community and beyond!