Editors note: Belinda Colombo began running some with Downtown Run Group in 2015. Most of the times she ran with us, she was pushing her daughter in a stroller – and outrunning probably 85% of us. Her running story should inspire folks to have a dream, never give up, and keep going. In her own words …..
“I grew up mainly in San Antonio and graduated from John Jay HS in 1993, then Baptist School of Professional Nursing in 1997. I have been an RN for 19 years now. I worked for the Baptist System for many years and now work for Amerigroup. I work from home telephonically. It’s not your usual nursing but I love that I can be home for my job. I’m 41 years old and married to Brian Colombo for 3 years. I have 2 children: Francesca (age 12) and Evangeline (age 2).”
Q: How did you find DRG and how long have you been running?
“I’ve been running for 8 years. I heard of DRG here and there. A couple of good friends of mine told me about what a nice group of people they were so I thought I would give it a try. I circulate around different running groups so right now I aim to run with DRG at least once a month or so.”
Q: What’s your favorite running memory, story or race?
“I have so many great running memories. I guess the best one is the first marathon and the last few. My first full marathon was in 2008 and I had come from about a year or so of consistent running. I was a slow runner. I finished in 6:49 but I was so proud of myself. Throughout the next several years I just kept running and running. I already had my daughter Francesca, and was a single mom and running became a way to manage my stress and keep me focused on a goal. I later married Brian and he kept encouraging me to try to run faster and follow my dream! I gave myself little tiny goals. “Make it to 5 (hrs) for a full!”….”make it to 4:30″ and so on. This last past year (2 years after I had my second daughter Evangeline) I decided to try to lose a little weight because no matter how much I ran, I couldn’t break a 25 min 5K. So I changed my diet to include more healthy options and continued my 100 miles a month. I lost 20 pounds and boy did my speed crew with such little effort! I ran San Antonio Rock and Roll 2015 in 3:59, Houston Marathon in 2016, just about a month later in 3:55, and my 20th full marathon, Austin in 2016 in 3:59 (hilly). I now have dreams to try to hit a Boston Qualifying time of 3:45 hopefully this fall or winter.”
Q: Advice for someone new to running?
“Don’t worry about how slow you are or competition. You are only competing against yourself. Keep goals small. Run whenever you can. Try to keep a balance between work and family because sometimes running can consume you. Relax and enjoy the ride.”
Q: What makes you “run inspired”?
“Every time I race. I feel I worked all this time to train and now it’s time to shine!”