Last week we profiled Lisa Kristin and interviewed her about running. Today we bring you an interview with another TN Multisports athlete and avid runner, Kirsten Nesholm. Kirsten recently finished the New York Marathon and is currently training for her second consecutive Boston Marathon race as well as her first full Ironman in August 2011.
When did you start running?
I started running nine years ago, when I was 30.
What inspired you to start doing marathons?
When I first started running, and even when I first started doing half marathons in 2006 (Seafair), I had no desire to do a full marathon. I have a vivid memory of watching the NY marathon on TV in 2007, the year Paula Radcliffe ran it just after her baby was born. I’d never watched a marathon on TV before and was completely engrossed in watching the excitement of the race. I decided then that I wanted to run it one day.
How has running changed your life?
It’s become an integral part of my life. I can’t imagine not running. I have so much more energy when I exercise, and it’s a huge stress reliever. It’s something that I have come to love, enjoy, and look forward to. I’ve also made some great friends through my training.
What challenges have you faced in training?
Having had several minor injuries has been the biggest challenge. I tend to want to over-train, which I KNOW isn’t good. 😉 It is extremely hard for me to take time off, but I’ve learned that taking time off to let your body recover enables you to come back stronger.
What activities do you do outside of running?
I do triathlons, so I swim and bike. I also do Pilates and a little bit of strength training. I think the cross training has helped me become a better runner. In addition to exercising, I love to cook and bake! That’s a huge hobby of mine. I’ve recently had to go gluten free, and it’s been fun experimenting with different ingredients.
What are some of your keys to your success in running?
- Cross training (swim, bike, pilates, strength)
- Running by heart rate! This was very hard for me at first. I thought I needed to push myself as hard as I could on every run or else I wasn’t making progress. I’ve since learned otherwise – you need to do easy recovery runs, tempo runs, speedwork, long steady runs. I think that running by heart rate has been instrumental in helping me run faster. Since I started running by heart rate a year ago, I’ve set PR’s in 3 distances this year – 10K, half marathon, and marathon.
- Teresa Nelson and her amazing training plans
- Supportive teammates and friends
What advice would you give those who are just getting started in running?
- Listen to your body. Take time off if you need to.
- Don’t give up too quickly! It takes time to get faster and run farther.
- You can do whatever you set your mind to. It’s amazing what your body is capable of. If you want to do a marathon, you can!