Our members come from all walks of life and are of all strides. Our Member Spotlight is one way to get to know your fellow runners.
This month’s Member Spotlight is on Liz O’Reilly:
Background (Age, Gender, Birthplace, and Running Experience): Elizabeth O’Reilly but I go by Liz. I am 48 and was born and raised on Long Island, NY. I started running in college, inspired by a roommate who was an avid runner, and became a more dedicated, avid runner during graduate school. With most of my classes being in the evening, I had more time on my hands during the day and filled that time with running. At first I would be amped about going 3 miles but the more I ran, the more I wanted to run and the further I wanted to challenge myself to go! I have been running fairly consistently for many, many years, but only got really hooked on racing within the last 10 years or so. On a whim I signed up for the Army Ten Miler years ago–never thinking I could run 10 miles, but again, the more I ran the more I wanted to run and with that one race under my belt, I was HOOKED!! Years later a work colleague encouraged me to sign up for races of longer distances, and on my 40th birthday, to mark the occasion, I signed up for my first half. Runners get it, but my non-running family and friends think I am crazy to actually pay to run 10 or 13.1 miles- which are my favorite distances!
What is your formula? What are the common classes or recovery elements this member does/uses? I generally try to do 3-4 classes a week, I’m hoping to incorporate more recovery into my routine- which is something that I was never very good at before and something that really attracted me to FRC. I like formula run, tread and train, and formula train. I think doing those classes with some good outdoor runs has really helped me sharpen my technique and has helped me work on my speed (thank you Jim and Carol!).
Why did you start running? For me, there’s nothing better than those post-running endorphins! I love getting lost in a run, to the point where I forget how far I have gone–those are the best kind of runs, and what keeps me coming back for more. Also, as a cancer survivor, running makes me feel strong, empowered, and healthy, and you can’t put a price on that feeling!!
Favorite quote? I have several favorite quotes but the one I think I like the best and one I often repeat to myself when I start feeling fatigued, is “mind over matter, if you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter”–it’s a great reminder of how far you can go and how much you can do if you put your mind to it.
What is your PR in your favorite distance? As noted above, my favorite distances are 10 milers and half marathons. My best time for a 10 miler is 1:31 and for a half is 2:02. I am a bit haunted by those 2 minutes on my PR half time, I admit!! and am working hard to get in a 2 or under time. I was hoping to do that this year–I was scheduled to run the NYC half and the Brooklyn half this year, as well as the Cherry Blossom Ten Miler and the GW Parkway Classic, but given the current situation, I will keep working at it so that I can crush it in 2021.
Favorite workout music? I am stuck in the 80s as far as my running playlist goes–thank you, Carol, for your 80s tunes at FRC. Those tunes get me going and keep me going–and sometimes even get me singing during my runs!
Why did you join FRC? I joined FRC to help me get back into a more consistent running regimen after taking a bit of time off due to family commitments and crazy jobs. FRC has really helped me refocus on my goals and get back into a routine. For months I waited for the studio to open, so intrigued about the idea behind FRC, and being a member has been better than I could have imagined. It really is like a family. In class I feel like we are training as a team and everyone is very supportive of each others’ goals, the recovery options are awesome, and it’s just a top notch place to be–a training facility with coaches like no other. I’m so glad to be a part of FRC-I feel spoiled and fortunate to be a part of such an awesome place. Run strong everyone and here’s to seeing everyone again soon on the treads!