It is recommended to get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day, yet some of us still can’t find time in our schedule to go for a walk or a quick run. Monica Perez might put many of us to shame because she works a full-time job, has 4 children (1 in college); she’s in the National Guard and as an added bonus—runs marathons for fun!
Perez started running in 2009 after her 4th child was born because she wanted to get in shape. Shortly after she decided to challenge herself by participating in short races, so she began doing short-distance races like a 5k and a 12k. It wasn’t easy, but it was a learning experience and through the years, she’s continued to challenge herself.
During the 6 years that she’s been running, she’s completed a total of 10 marathons, many shorter races, and even a 50k. “Running takes me away from things, it makes me feel good and I make a lot of important decisions while I’m running,” explains Perez.
With 4 kids, Perez knows that if she wants to run, she has to plan for it. “I do most of my running before work, so if I want to do 5 miles, I know I have to plan to run for 45 minutes and make sure I have my kid’s lunches ready before they go to school,” she says.
“Running makes me feel better because when I’m constantly running and training and I miss a couple of days, I start missing it and I don’t feel like myself,” she says. Running makes her feel well balanced and makes her push herself, empowering her to believe that she can do anything. She encourages everyone to run, it’s something she’s learned to love, even though at the beginning you have to experiment to see what works best for you.