My name is Vicki Brown, and I am a runner. At the age of 66, I have completed over 20 Half Marathons, 25 Full Marathons and also one 50K Ultra Marathon. In Chicago, I finished top 10 in my age category. I’ve qualified and run Boston 5 times. In total, I’ve completed 5 of the 6 world major marathons, and plan to finish the last one (Tokyo) in March 2020…but would you believe that 17 years ago I had never run a day in my life? I’ll be honest – starting to run at age 48 was a daunting task, but these three steps are what helped me get there.
In 2002 at the age of 48, my husband passed away. Not only had I become an overweight couch potato, but I was also diagnosed with tendinitis in both shoulders and osteoporosis. It was then that I decided ask for help. I found an amazing Athletic Therapist who started guiding me down the right path. In 12 weeks I lost 25lbs and started a weight-training regime. By the end of the year I had lost 40lbs and although I swore it would never happen, I started running.
Looking for support, I decided to join Connor’s Runners, which is a running group and community in Oakville, ON, coached by Dr. Stephen Connor. What started as a casual way of staying fit became something that I started to look forward to everyday. This is why at the age of 50 I decided to train for my first half marathon, and then my first full marathon at 53. My coach mapped out a plan: each marathon required 12-16 weeks of training and running 3-5 times a week with the longest run taking anywhere from 1.5 to 3.5 hours. Between race training, he paired that with workouts to maintaining my fitness level with easy runs 3x a week, plus swimming and weight training for cross-training purposes.
Anyone who maintains a certain level of activity will tell you that injuries are inevitable and I’ve had my fair share. My running coach, Dr. Connor was quick to introduce me to Mobility Tape when I first injured my knee while training. With it, I recovered much faster, and got back to training quicker. Now, when I feel that a muscle is just a little too angry and needs a “nice warm hug” to get me through a tough run, I head straight for the Mobility Tape.
I’ve learned a lot on the journey to where I am now. To anyone who wants to start running, or just start getting active, never underestimate the power of finding the people and the tools that can help you get there. Asking for help at the age of 48 was the best decision I’ve made, and I hope that it can inspire you to do the same.