Boston Marathon Spotlight Athlete
Betsy Johnson is no novice. She’s been at this since she was a teenager, finishing her first marathon at age 16.
She first qualified for Boston in 2008 at the San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon running a 3:32 and made her first appearance at Boston in 2009. All in all, she’s been to Boston five times. 2019 will be her sixth appearance. In addition to this, she has also made her mark in the triathlon world competing in multiple Iron Man events.
Already an accomplished athlete by any stretch, Betsy turned to Knoxville Endurance for coaching as a way to push herself further, get even faster and avoid training injuries.
“I didn’t want to get injured again while running. If I was just gonna do running, I needed to do it where I had someone telling me what to do and who would push me.”
This year at Boston, her goal is to set her marathon PR. Having a lot of experience running the race, she knows it’s not a simple course to set a personal record on. She’s crossed the finish line more than once in 3:29, but this year she wants to push that down to the low 3:20’s.
“That’s the thing. As a competitive runner, you’re always challenging yourself. What keeps you going? What makes you get up at 5 am in the morning? Is it just to get up and do it? Or is it because you’re setting goals for yourself?”
Betsy ultimately credits an increase in her overall speed to a combination of track workouts and taking the easy days a little easier.
“I really try to take it to heart. ‘Easier days easier.’”
However, Betsy understands that nutrition is arguably just as (if not more) important than the training she does.
“You can train super hard, and do your workouts and everything, but if you don’t eat right, if you don’t feel right, you’re gonna fall apart.”
As a certified nutritionist with her own business and 67 clients, she knows this all too well. A business she developed after helping a friend lose 30 pounds. She realized she had a knack for helping people reach their own fitness goals. Like many in the running community, Betsy has an abundance of drive and she testifies that a lot of that drive comes in the form of helping others and working with others.
“At the end of the day are we making a difference? Has everything revolved around you, or are you making a difference with people? You have to ask yourself what your purpose is in life, and if it’s just all self-centered and all around you, I think it kind of gets to be a dead end, but if you fill your life with other things and other drives, then it gets you up. It keeps you going. Why did I go with Bobby [Knoxville Endurance]? I wanted to be pushed harder.”