Today we spoke with one of our favorite Gametiime users, Heather Koski. The name might sound familiar as Heather recently wrote a great guest post for us here titled “Ten Great Tips to Start Running Consistently”. They were excellent points for all of us working to run more to have in our back pocket and she can certainly back them up.
Heather is a frequent runner with the Richmond Beach Running Club, runs weekly at Born to Run’s Seattle City Run, and (through hard work and dedication) continues to improve her PRs at local races around the area. Read more about Heather’s running life below.
Tell us a little about yourself. How did you get into running? I love the simplicity of running. You don’t need any special equipment, clothing or even shoes to get your run on. I ran track in high school, but I didn’t truly fall in love with running until I started racing competitively when I was in college at the University of Colorado in Boulder. The more I raced, the more I ran and the better I became. I’m pleased to say that I’m still improving!
What races have you run in the past? I’ve ran more than 100 races all over the world. A few notable races include The Dipsea Race in Marin County, CA, the Colfax Half Marathon in Denver, CO, the Bolder Boulder, and The Wipro San Francisco Half Marathon. And, I just ran the Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half Marathon this past weekend.
Do you have any future race goals? If so, what are they? I hope to run my first full marathon this fall: Avenue of the Giants Marathon in Humboldt, California. I would also like to run a sub-45-minute 10K and sub-6-minute mile. All three are running goals in progress!
What was your favorite race and why? My favorite race has always been the Bolder Boulder on Memorial Day in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. It’s a quick, flat 10K that winds around town and finishes at Folsom Field with an ice cold Colorado beer and holiday festivities. Drawing more than 50,000 runners every year, the race attracts elite and recreational runners alike. Every year after the race, race participants congregate at the Boulder Creek Festival. It’s the best time of the year to be in Boulder!
Most embarrassing race experience? Not knowing that race-day registration was not an option for a particular 10K that I wanted to run in Denver when I still lived in Colorado, I did a quick search to see if there were any other nearby races that I could run that morning. As luck would have it, there was a 5K going on at Colorado’s best known music venue: Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Known to be one of the most challenging 5K courses in the United States, I wasn’t entirely prepared for the Run the ‘Rocks 5K. Not only did I arrive and register late, but too much coffee induced a necessary wait for the porta-potty. I was actually in the bathroom when the race started and literally ran from the porta-potty to the start line when the gun went off. At the time, I found it rather embarrassing, but my humiliation was forgotten during the last 1K to the finish line up Red Rock’s infamous stairs.
Any advice for someone (perhaps starting out with a couch-to-5K program) who thinks they could never run a marathon? Be realistic with yourself and your goals. Start small and identify what you’re trying to achieve. The most important component to achieving any goal is a consistent effort. Remember: Effort equals results and results induce bigger goals. Dream big and run hard!
What’s your favorite running gadget and/or gear? I love my pink Ironman watch for speed workouts at the track.
And, on your feet?I just transitioned into Brooks PureProject minimalist shoes, which have made my stride more natural and my legs stronger. I’ve always been a big fan of Brooks Running and Nike Running shoe collections – never worn a bad shoe from either brand!
What motivates you when you don’t feel like training? In the instance that I’m not feeling my run, I always think about how I feel after a run: Amazing! That thought alone usually gets me going. Otherwise, a post-run coffee or beer (depending on the time of day) usually does the trick.
What’s on your running playlist? I used to listen to music constantly when running, even if I was running with a group (I know, faux pas!), but the power button on my iPod Mini recently broke. Subsequently, I’ve been running more frequently without music and with local running clubs. I can still use the device, but it’s more of a hassle than anything and replacing it is not high on my priority list since I’ve been running without it for at least a month now. Added bonus: My most recent 10K PR was accomplished sans music. I may never go back!
If you could run any race, anywhere in the world, what would it be? I would love to run the Jungfrau Marathon in Switzerland in the future. Climbing nearly 6,000 feet in the Swiss Alps, it’s one of the best known mountain marathons. Since I grew up in Colorado, I find a European mountain marathon somewhat alluring.
Anything else you would like to share with the Gametiime community? I encourage everybody to give running a chance. I can honestly say that it has changed my my life and body in a wonderfully positive way. Please connect with me if you’re interested in running around Seattle!
Like this post? Join Gametiime free and discover the best way to find your next race!