An Interview with Jeannie Hui

Jeannie Hui, who recently ran in the Boston Marathon, comes from Hong Kong, and works as a graphic designer. 

How was the Boston Marathon?

The Boston Marathon was great, my result was awful though. No one would expect to run under 31 degree heat, but this is not the fault of anyone. Nevertheless, because of the hot weather, I got to know more about why the Boston Marathon has such a good reputation, they are so caring about runners, I’ve never felt so respected as a runner before. Also the atmosphere was wonderful. All the residents along the course did their best to cheer us up, girls from the college were shouting “Love you! Kiss me! Kiss me!”, they were so lovely and cheerful. Also people used different ideas to cool us and save us from the brutal sun. They used garden hoses to water us, or used kitchen roll tissue paper soaked with cold water to decrease our body temperature, children gave us oranges, ice cubes, even gummies and hard candies. All of this shows their respect to runners and enthusiasm toward the marathon.

What was your inspiration in joining it?

Since I started running marathons, I’ve heard the Boston Marathon many times from all kinds of run-mates. But I didn’t attend the Boston Marathon when I first qualified few years ago. It wasn’t until I got hurt in 2009, that I began to regret not attending. I was afraid that I could never run this event again. So after I recovered, I tried to qualify again for the Boston Marathon. It also celebrate the fourth decade of my life.

How long have you been running for?

I started running since 2002, but in very easy and relaxed way. In 2005 I started to train as I wanted to do a full marathon. In 2009 the whole year I didn’t run at all because of injury. To aid my recovery, I changed my training habits. I don’t run as hard as before, and just keep to basic training and maintaining myself to avoid too bad a performance.

What is training for a marathon like?

It’s hard, you have to train yourself with variety, if you can, interval, mid-speed, tempo run, hill running and long distance etc. You have to accumulate your running miles week by week. Other than running, eating and rest also count as part of the marathon training. So I would say, if you seriously commit to running a marathon, your lifestyle and your life will change.

Did you have any expectations of yourself and your performance going into the marathon?

In the past, my answer would be doing my personal best and run as fast as I can. Now I like to experience something that I hadn’t done, something special, new and memorable.

What tips would you give to someone who is just starting out in running?

Choose a good pair of shoes. It’s very important to protect yourself from injury especially newbies. Cushions are good. Start with some simple running, no need to be too harsh, give your body time. Set goals, which help keep you motivated to run and train. You can achieve your goal step by step: 10k, half marathon, and then full marathon.

Don’t get hurt. Running is easy when someone who starts with a passion.

Are you planning on running any more marathons?

Yes, my next one is the Tokyo Marathon.

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