As a native New Yorker, running the NYC Marathon has always been on my bucket list. It wasn’t until after I ran it for the first time back in 2011 that I realized it would become a yearly tradition. After graduating NYU’s Tisch school of the Arts, my love of performance and dance helped me find my way into the fitness industry and led me to complete the certifications necessary to become a trainer. I was passionate about learning the mechanics behind the way the body moves and the progression of a healthy being and lifestyle. These things drew me to Flywheel, where I have been an instructor for nearly two years.
When did you first get into running?
I ran from time to time throughout high school and college, but it wasn’t really until I spent a few months living in Italy that I really got into it. I had to find balance with such a culturally rich lifestyle! My outlet was my long run every morning. Plus, it was a great way to explore Florence.
What workouts did you do prior to running?
I’ve always loved trying new work outs and involved myself in whatever I could find that was active and exciting. For many years dancing and yoga were my main forms of physical exercise. I also had some wonderful mentors in the gym who helped me focus on weight lifting and strength training.
How many marathons have you ran and what keeps you going back for more?
This will be my third time running the NYC Marathon. What keeps me coming back? That’s a VERY good question! I guess I just can’t resist the personal challenge.
What do you typically eat to fuel a long run or a Flywheel class?
I incorporate a lot of fruits, veggies and proteins into my everyday diet. I try to focus on eating whole foods that I know will help keep my energy level up as well as supplement my work outs. What you put into your body all the time not just pre- work out or race, will be most beneficial in supporting your training and fueling your body. Some of my go-tos are egg whites, grilled chicken, leafy greens such as kale and spinach, almond butter, blueberries, and quinoa.
What motivates you to carry on during a race when you begin to feel tired?
I think about the mile markers where I know I will get to see my family and friends. Usually, I will see them once or twice throughout the race and knowing that’s ahead of me helps keep me on track.
As a Flywheel instructor how do you channel your energy and experience as a marathon runner into your classes? How do you want your riders to
feel when they “cross the finish line ” of your class?
Running long distances has helped optimize the way I structure my classes. When I’m preparing classes I try to incorporate a well-rounded mixture of short explosive intervals for speed work and optimal burn as well as longer intervals for endurance and strength. Learning what I need to get the most out of my runs has given a huge insight into how to best use the time I have to use with my riders so they leave well conditioned, happy, and stronger for it!
Describe the high — how do you feel once you cross that finish line of the marathon?
Crossing the finish line of the NYC Marathon has been one of the most fulfilling and emotional moments of my life. A good portion of it is relief because at that point your body is hurting and your brain is exhausted, but nothing can top the sense of achievement and self-awareness. You’ve just taken yourself through all five boroughs of New York ON FOOT, and you get to finish in Central Park. I want everyone to experience this! The ultimate way to feel this city. It’s incredible!
How do you indulge after finishing a marathon?
A bubble-bath and a glass of champagne.
Best of luck to Kara and all those who are running the NYC marathon – and any other races this upcoming weekend!
Fly instructors Matt Restivo, Melissa Wolfe, Sergie Deych are also running the marathon this Sunday! Read about their training here on ClassPass.
MORE FROM THE FLY BLOG
“I FLY For Boston.” Boston rider Lisa Conti shares her experience witnessing the Boston Marathon bombings last year and how Flywheel helped her recover and bring her back to the city she loved. Read her story here.
“If you are pushing your threshold, using proper form, and consistently hitting the stadium at Flywheel, your body will be in great shape on and off the road.” Flywheel Chicago instructor Kyla Barbour says training at Flywheel attributed to her marathon success. Read more here.
Try these yoga moves from Flywheel Master Instructor Kate Hickl (perfect to do pre and post run!).
Love smoothies and green juices? Here’s what NYC instructor Hannah orders from her favorite NYC juice shop.