Every year, thousands of runners train to complete the Anthem Richmond Marathon, American Family Fitness Half Marathon, and VCU Health 8k. This year, we're excited to follow along in the journey with a few of our incredible participants! We'll share their reflections on our Facebook page, so stay tuned for updates as they get #richmondready!
Jessica is a VCU alumni living in Atlanta, GA and the author of Jess Runs ATL. Since picking up running in the summer of 2013, she has completed 2 full marathons and 7 half marathons (with two more half marathons on deck before race day). When it came time to pick her second full marathon last year, she couldn’t think of a better place than Richmond during VCU’s homecoming weekend, where her friends and family could be a big part of her race. In 2015, Jess finished the Richmond Marathon with a 28 minute personal record and loved every minute of the race. She knew she would be back again this year, and is looking forward to running through the streets of Richmond for her third full marathon.
Jess moved to Atlanta in 2008, after graduating from the Fashion Merchandising department of VCU. She has since received her MBA from Emory University and currently works in downtown Atlanta. Jess lives just outside of the city with her boyfriend and their rescued Golden/Lab mix, Skipper. When not running, you can find her working on DIY projects and hunting down the best burgers, pizza, and beer Atlanta has to offer.
Ann Mazur is an elite runner and 200hr RYT with over 900 hours of yoga teaching experience. In 2012, while in her Ph.D. program at the University of Virginia, she founded Runners Love Yoga, the aim of which is to bring yoga to the running community. She firmly believes in the power of yoga as a cross-training tool for runners—both for increasing strength and efficiency and for preventing injuries. Postcollegiately, she now just runs an average of 30 miles per week but supplements her training with at least an hour of yoga per day. With this unconventional method, she has PRed in everything from the mile (5:13.5 road, May 2016) to half marathon (1:21:39, VA Beach 2016) to marathon (2:57:17, CIM 2015). She can’t remember the last time she was injured—she wants other runners to experience the joy of running and racing faster and more consistently. As the tagline of RLY goes: “Do Yoga Run Faster.” Ann is currently a Lecturer of English at UVa and prolific road racer. She loves teaching English and yoga, and is excited about her most recent RLY project, developing and designing a line of women's activewear for running/yoga, which is due out late summer/early fall and entirely Made in the USA. She loves trail running in Virginia, the half marathon distance, and is excited to run the Richmond Half Marathon this November for another crack at sub-1:20.