Professional runner Anna Weber shares her love of running and why she participates in the Joseph Maley Foundation Run, Walk, Roll in this week’s blog post. Anna also serves on JMF’s event committee this year, offering her unique perspective as a professional runner.
When did you begin running?
I began running in sixth grade. At the time, I was very interested in basketball and the sixth grade basketball coach said anyone who ran cross country would automatically make the first cut for the basketball team. I wanted to be as prepared as possible, so I joined the cross country team and the rest is history!
What is the best part of running?
Running is universal. Regardless of your finishing time, everyone in the race experiences the same nervousness, pain, and satisfaction. There is nothing like sharing battle stories after a race with other participants!
What is the most challenging aspect of running?
Running can make you feel like you are on top of the world but also kill your confidence – sometimes in the same week! Learning to control the mental side of running, such as not getting too encouraged by a good workout, too discouraged by a bad workout, or avoiding comparisons between yourself and other competitors can be difficult.
How do you choose which races to participate in each year?
For me, I am pursuing running at a semi-professional level so the races that I choose all must fit into my overall goals. Currently, my goal is to qualify for my second Olympic Marathon Team Trials. Therefore, I will choose one goal marathon, and a few shorter races during my build up to serve as fitness checks. When choosing a race, I always look for good competition, a fun atmosphere, and the potential for prize money.
Why do you Run, Walk, and Roll with JMF?
I first started running the JMF Run, Walk, Roll because it serves as the USATF Indiana 5K Championship. I try to participate in as many USATF Indiana races as possible because they are great for my development as a semi-pro runner. I continue to run with JMF because I love to support a great cause and I appreciate how much care is put into organizing such a fun event.
What is your favorite part of the race?
I love that the JMF Run, Walk, Roll is organized by runners but for a fantastic cause. The fact that the race serves as both an elite championship and an opportunity that welcomes families of all ability levels to compete side by side is so fun.
What would you say to someone who has not participated before to encourage them to join us?
The love and care that is put into organizing this event, which truly offers something for every single runner, walker, or roller in Indy, is unparalleled. The flat, fast course is a great way to experience some of the best running in Indy, and the community event afterwards is a lot of fun. This race represents everything that is good about the Indianapolis running community, such as a supportive, all-inclusive atmosphere with an attention to detail for athletes who are aiming for a PR.
For more information about Anna, please visit her website at www.annaweberruns.com.