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Rock/Creek Race Team: Kathy Johns

Kathy Johns

Age: 31

Occupation:  Sales/Marketing

I discovered running a short seven years ago, and began running trails early on in that time. I knew immediately that I had found a life long love and passion. I have never considered myself a roadrunner by nature, and only train on asphalt to make me better on the trails. The solitude and simplicity of the trail, coupled with the epic nature of endurance events is where my niche resides. It just works for my life and personality in a way that brings immense satisfaction and joy.

Lifelong Running Goals:

I love the freedom that running brings, and my lifelong goal is to maintain my ability to access this freedom, particularly on the trail. My primary “lifelong running goal” would be simply keeping myself healthy and injury-free, and gain experiential knowledge of ultras, in order to sustain a lifestyle of endurance running for many years to come.

In the next few years, I want to do more destination running and hopefully get a 100-miler (or two) under my belt.

What I Love About Running:

On the trail, everything gets stripped down to the essentials. I love what the physical act of trail running does for me mentally and spiritually. Moments of pure exhilaration and desperation have taught me more about myself than I thought possible. The longer I run, the more I find I have to learn- a great metaphor for life!

Favorite Trails:

For me, a good trail is any mixture of the following: some climbs, technical stints, natural beauty, and the feeling that I have managed to escape the “outside” world. Prentice Cooper in the winter is one of my favorite things. There is nothing like moving across single-track terrain with the River Gorge in full view, with the feeling that I’m out there discovering something while the rest of the world sleeps- not to mention the well deserved breakfast and coffee afterwards!

Tips for Other Runners:

Ultras are your own experience. Celebrate the discovery of things that work for you, and learn to let your failures add to the experience. Enjoy the unknown of what lays in front of you.

2009 Races and year in review:

Oak Mtn. 50K (7th F)
Rock/Creek Trail Series: River Gorge Run, Trail Marathon
Tahoe Rim Trail Endurance Run 50-mile.

The majority of my 2009 year was spent in two major categories:

  • First 6 months was training for Tahoe Rim Trail Endurance Run for 100-miler. Most time training was non-event oriented, just logging as many miles as possible, including 40-mile run on the AT. Completed 50-mile race due to fracture 8-weeks prior to event. I could write a novel about what I learned in this process.
  • Second 6 months was no running whatsoever due to foot surgery immediately following Tahoe. Absolutely no running for 4 months. Novel number 2?

Races or Other Significant Accomplishments:

Upchuck 50K 4th female 2008
Rock/Creek StumpJump 50K
Sweetwater 50K 6th female 2008
Mt. Cheaha 50K 9th female 2008
Forest Park 30K 2nd female 2008
Mountain Mist 50K
NOC/Subaru 21 mile Endurance Run
Nashville Country Music Marathon

Race Calendar for 2010:

After four months off from foot issues, not sure exactly what calendar holds and will make this up as I go!

Hopefully: Mt. Cheaha 50K, Oak Mtn. 50K, 50 miler at Tahoe or elsewhere, 100 miler if I’m lucky, and other 50Ks later in 2010.

Kathy’s Favorite Winter & Spring Trail Running Gear: