I first came to know of Doreen years ago on the streets of my home town. LDF Dora and I were on our way to an early 10 mile race at the shore, when we saw Doreen run by us at a stop light. Dora, who already knew of Doreen, was thrilled to have so easily fulfilled the good luck omen requirement of seeing a “really good runner” before a race (a very good sign that the race would go well). And indeed it had…that race still holds as my 10 mile PR. So it is serendipitous that Doreen be the first competitive runner to answer our “10 questions”.
Meet masters runner Doreen McCoubrie… At 48, her name inevitably would appear as the top runner of our age group in many of the local races…and never by marginal minutes, but by huge gaps of time. She is now training to secure her spot on the starting line of the Olympic trials in the marathon for the second time (she already qualified in 2008). She is a local hero to us forty somethings in our running community, so I am thrilled that she agreed to answer some of our questions.
Here is an excerpt from a recent Running Times article about Doreen:
“After competing in cross country at Paul VI High School in Haddonfield, NJ, McCoubrie went on to Penn State and recorded times of 4:16.9 for 1500m and 9:30.50 for 3,000m, earning All-American honors. She continued running after college and did her first marathon in 1999, a 3:12 in Maui, then broke 3:00 for the first time the following year with a 2:56:56 in Philadelphia. But the real improvement began around 2005, when she recorded 17:46 in the Freihofer’s 5K and 58:41 at Broad Street. “I didn’t really get serious about it until four or five years ago, when the kids were old enough,” explains McCoubrie, the mother of three teenagers. “I started putting in more mileage then.”
Although she recorded her personal best marathon of 2:46:33 at Chicago in 2006, she considers the 2008 Olympic trials in Boston her most memorable running experience.” (full Running Times article here)
10 Questions for Doreen:
1. Running skirt, friend or foe?
I personally don’t see myself ever wearing one, but I think they look nice. I just pull out whatever is on top in my drawer and hope it matches a little. Don’t usually think about what I’m wearing when I run.
2. What is your idea of the perfect run (details please…when, where with whom)
My favorite time to run is very early in the morning as soon as its light enough to see a little. No cars and you feel like you have the neighborhood to yourself. I live about one mile from Valley Forge National Park and I NEVER get tired of running there it is sooooo nice. I love to be alone in my head thinking about all different things or nothing at all and having a day when you feel like your run is effortless.
3. What are your running goals at this moment? 2012?
My most immediate goal is the Chicago Marathon and trying to qualify for the Olympic trials. The standard is 2:46 which would be a PR, so some luck is definitely needed, but its fun to try. Ironically, I just hurt my calf yesterday so I’m hoping its not serious. My next goal after that is to try an ultra if my body feels okay and up to it.
4. What training tools/items/gear can you not live without?
The only thing I really worry about is good shoes. I’m not a gear person, but I did finally get a Garmin and I like it just to keep track of distance. I pace myself mostly by feel and don’t even keep much of a log, just distances.
5. What trait do you most value in your training partners? Are they men or women or both?
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