Congrats to Kristy Wagner for being named the September Ultimate Fit Runner of the Month! Kristy is 47 years old with two children. Earlier this year, she was blessed with a wonderful granddaughter. Kristy is also lucky enough to have a tremendous year round training partner who keeps pushing her to get stronger and faster. She works as a coatings chemist at Red Spot Paint and was born in Jasper, IN. She has lived in Evansville since 2001.
What motivates you to run/walk?
I love the health aspects that I get from running, but I really enjoy running with and meeting new people (at races, training runs or even just fellow runners on the street / Greenway). But really, there is nothing better than seeing someone conquer a distance that he or she did not think was previously possible. And if I can help motivate and encourage that person in any way possible, then that completely makes my day.
I also love the camaraderie of the running / walking communities. I know of no other sport where there is so much building each other up, rather than bringing others down. When we help each other, everyone wins.
How many races have you participated in? (Estimate if needed)
Around 110 – and counting
What age did you start running/walking for fun & competitively?
I ran one year of track in high school and then stopped running until I was in my late 30s. I picked it back up to help alleviate stress and pass the time while waiting for my kids to finish afterschool activities. I entered my first race in 2011 – the Evansville Mesker Zoo race and have been adding more races every year.
Favorite place to run/walk?
Love the USI / Burdette Greenway, especially in the spring and fall. The Cultural Trail in Indy is pretty nice as well.
Favorite local race?
So many to choose from, but I guess I would have to say it is a tossup between the Mesker Zoo 5K and the USI Night Flight. Mainly because they are so different from the other races that I do.
Favorite race outside of the Tri-State?
Indy Mini Half Marathon. It is an amazing feeling running with 30-40,000 other runners / walkers. Plus there is constant entertainment / encouragement along the course.
Farthest you have traveled to do a race?
Favorite race distance?
5K – the pain is over quicker
Favorite race memory?
Crossing the finish line at last year’s Evansville Half Marathon breaking my PR (that I had just set in May at the Indy Mini a few months earlier).
Funniest race memory?
It wasn’t funny at the time, but during a training run, it started to “lightly” hail (about pea sized). We continued running, but the hail turned golf ball sized and a torrential down pour to boot. We ended up huddled behind a tree (and that’s generous on the description; it was more like a sapling) on St. Joe Avenue trying to avoid getting pelted by the hail and the raging river that used to be the sidewalk. I ended up with a half dozen bruises on my arms and legs by the time it was done. I’m sure we looked quite pathetic to anybody who happened to drive past.
Craziest thing you saw at or during a race?
I believe it was the Jingle Bell 5K, but a gentlemen was “running” it on skies – there was no snow on the roads…
Favorite pre & post-race meal/drink?
Pre-race: English muffin with peanut butter and a banana.
Post race: Anything that goes with beer or wine
What is your favorite brand of running shoe?
I am definitely a Brooks Glycerin type of girl. I’ve tried others, but these work best for my running style.
How many miles do you run/walk a week?
What are your future goals for running/walking?
To still be able to run when I’m in my 70s and 80s or older (God willing)!
Favorite time of day to run?
Late afternoon / early evening – if it isn’t too hot / humid!
Favorite weather to run in?
Distances over 6 miles: 40◦. I do have to say there is something special about running when it is snowing (as long as there is no ice on the trail), but I also can really appreciate running in 75◦ and a gentle rain. So, basically, anything under 80◦ and low humidity
Music or no music?
When I run by myself (which isn’t very often anymore), I like music. But never when I am running with my group of peeps.
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Brandon L. Barrett