Hello there readers.
I thought it would be a good idea to give you more information about who Jenny is – so here it goes!
First off you would probably like to know that I am a high school senior and will be attending either Davidson College or University of South Carolina next year. Either place I chose (jeez it’s so hard to decide), I’m going to run on the Cross Country and Track team. I couldn’t imagine not running in college…it’s a part of who I am and competing gives me a rush!
After hearing that I’m only a senior (and 17), you might not think I know much about what I’m talking about. But ask anyone I know and you will discover my passion for researching health, running, fitness, and nutrition topics. What can I say, it is so interesting!
Anyways, I started running cross country and track in 7th grade after watching my sister beast it up in her middle school races. My mom tells practically EVERYONE she can the story about how I used to ride a bike with her when she ran and one day I decided to ditch the bike and run myself. Frankly, I don’t remember “ditching my bike and running”, but I guess it makes for a good story and what not. I do remember that even in elementary school I liked to run fast in our timed miles and half miles during gym class. In 6th grade there was a girl who ran a 6:23 mile during class, and I was determined to beat her time. After a few weeks I broke her record by a few seconds and never looked back. People thought I was crazy for enjoying those laps around the bus pad, but I didn’t care much what they thought as long as I kept beating my times.
Fast forward to my freshman year of high school – by now I had run a 5:27 mile and low 12 minutes for the 2 mile in cross country. I worked hard all cross country season and made it to the regional meet where I had to place top ten to make it to state. My best time that season (11:46) ranked me third in the region, but I had an off race and ended up getting passed by 3 girls in the last 200 meters…placing 12th after being in the top ten the entire race. I was absolutely devastated, but I learned from the experience and am a stronger person because of it. (Below is a picture of me at that race)
Freshman track season went okay, but I didn’t do as well as I wanted to…something felt off. I had no one to train with at my school because none of the girls pushed me or could help me get better, so my times remained very similar to my 8th grade PRs.
Sophomore cross country season was very exciting because my team made it to State!! (By the way I live in Texas and making it to State is a really big deal)
Unfortunately, I had another off race at the end of my cross country season. I began to realize that I was always burned out by the end of the running season because I raced basically every week for 10 weeks or so. Little did I know that I was actually iron deficient….when my sophomore track season started off I was running 20-30 seconds slower than usually in my mile races (which is A LOT for the mile). I went to get my ferritin checked, and it was at an alarmingly low level of 3! The doctor told me it should be around a 100 or so and that I must start taking iron supplements and eating red meat (I rarely if ever eat red meat). I will go into further detail about my ferritin problems and journey back to health in a future blog post.
The rest of my sophomore track season was a recovery period, and I wasn’t able to run fast enough to advance to Regionals or State.
Junior cross country was a bit like freshman year…I made it to Regionals but not State and my times got a bit slower during the season. (You see a pattern here? I will explain in a future post!) Luckily, I was getting my iron levels figured out and was still able to improve my times during the middle of the season. (Don’t I look lovely in the picture below? Haha yeah the Texas weather makes me sweat quite a bit in August.)
The winter of my junior year something magical happened! I decided to train for my first half marathon 🙂 Best. Decision. Ever. I’m totally a long distance girl, and I thrived on higher mileage and longer long runs! Going into the race in January 2012 I was relaxed and didn’t set high expectations for myself…I was out there to have fun and run 13.1! (that was the motto for my half marathon race that year: easy, fun, run 13.1) I ended up having a great race and loved the distance! It is my favorite race distance by far. If you haven’t tried it, you totally should.
After a awesome winter of training, I PR’d in every distance in track! I was so happy and thankful to be back on track. I improved my 800 meter time from 2:28 to 2:26, my 1600m time from 5:27 to 5:20, and my 3200m time from 11:46 to 11:27. Even though my past seasons weren’t the best, I don’t regret anything because I have learned the right ways to train and take care of myself.
I ended up placing 4th at Regionals in the 3200 meter run, only a place off making it to State 🙂
Although I did have a great season, I also found out about a thyroid and hormone issue in the middle of the season that I am still dealing with to this day. I had gone without my period for 2 years until recently, so my doctor was worried about my bones. Luckily, I didn’t get a stress fracture and have figured out that I need to incorporate more fat into my diet.
SENIOR YEAR…the best year of all!! Looking back on this year thus far, I realized how awesome the year has been. Texas started running 5K’s this year in cross country, so I was able to have a really successful season with the longer distance. I dropped my 5K time from low 19’s to 18:32 and made it to State as an individual! (First time ever for me to make it as an individual)
The picture above is me running at State! I placed 20th and made 3rd Team All-State 🙂
At the moment, I am in the middle of my senior track season and am building my health back up after a bout with the flu and some IT band syndrome. I hope to break my times soon and become the healthiest person I can be! I have really been focusing on my strength work lately and already see a huge difference in my body.
There is so much more I could tell you about myself but instead I’m just going to post a favorites list of mine below, so you can get to know me a little better.
Favorite vegetable: this is very hard since I love every vegetable ever except for raw tomatoes (I like them cooked and in dishes); it would probably have to be onions or butternut squash. Onions because I put them in every vegetable dish and they are so versatile.
Favorite fruit: oranges when they are really juicy…otherwise apples (I eat them everyday for snack)
Favorite berry: Raspberries! I know it is a fruit, but I love berries so I had to sneak those in there.
Favorite breakfast: oatmeal using steel cut oats and cooked with half a banana and flax seeds with nuts, agave, and cinnamon (sometimes berries)
Favorite lunch: packed salad with spinach/romaine, quinoa or some grain mixed with vegetables, chicken or a veggie burger, and lemon salad dressing
Favorite dinner: brown rice and bean mixture my mom makes with loads of veggies! (vegetarian)
Favorite protein: salmon…I have an obsession! I also love chicken though.
Favorite carb: sweet potatoes or quinoa (brown rice pasta on occasions:) )
Favorite fat: Truthfully, I love cheese but I haven’t been able to eat it because it causes my allergies to act up. Nuts are my favorite and avocados are right behind.
Favorite pre-workout snack: a banana
Favorite snack: packed protein shakes with protein powder, almond milk, ice, spinach, almond butter, chia seeds, half a banana, and sometimes berries
Favorite weakness food: peanut butter…I tried switching to almond butter and sunflower seed butter, but I still have to have some PB a few times a week!
Favorite dessert: ice cream!! Chocolate chip cookie dough is amazing, but I also love gingerbread cookie, birthday cake, half baked, and basically every Ben & Jerry’s flavor ever.
Favorite healthy dessert: black bean brownies, healthy gluten-free oatmeal cookies, or 3-ingredient chocolate bars (agave, cocoa powder, coconut butter)
Favorite color: blue, but I also like pink and purple a lot.
Favorite makeup product: mascara for sure, I love long lashes
Favorite scent: Viva la Juicy by Juicy Couture; I LOVE this perfume… it has been my favorite for several years.
Favorite TV show: Pretty Little Liars, hands down.
Favorite movie: She’s the Man, White Chicks, or Avatar
Favorite singer: Ed Sheeran
Favorite song: It’s Time by The Imagine Dragons ❤
Favorite U.S. city: Boulder, CO (I also love San Francisco)
Favorite city out of the country: Cinque Terra, Italy (I will never forgot this place…must go back in the future)
Favorite state: California (beaches, red wood forest, perfect weather…umm yes please!)
Favorite country: Italy (Caribbean islands are also beautiful)
Favorite vacation spot: Royal Caribbean cruises (Oasis of the Seas is the best boat by far)
Favorite school subject: Calculus or Chemistry
Favorite store: Whole Foods; clothes wise probably Urban Outfitters, Nordstrom, AE, or Anthropologie if I could afford it
Favorite actor: Ryan Gosling
Favorite actress: Emma Stone, Rachel McAdams, Emma Watson, or Rebel Wilson
Favorite form of exercise: RUNNING! Haha but really running is the best thing ever.
Favorite race distance: Half Marathon or 2 miles
Favorite running workout: Fartleks! Tempo runs are great too.
Favorite place to run: Town Lake trail in Austin, TX
Favorite brand: Nike girl for life.
Favorite shoe brand: Saucony (I also really like Brooks, it’s a toss up)
Favorite book series: Typical, but Harry Potter. I will forever wish I went to Hogwarts!
Favorite blog: Hungryrunnergirl or In It to Win It (lizzyj1305)
Favorite social media app: Instagram
Thanks for reading and I hope you all have a wonderful day! I promise I will post lots of awesome information in the future 🙂
Jenny AKA the runner girl
P.S. Wasn’t my pink hair awesome?!