The BQ(Q) – Cindy W

Name: Cindy W

Sex: female

Age (at the time of first BQ): 44

Height: 5′ 3

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 113 lbs

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? What was your finishing time? Tell us a little about the race.

Columbus Marathon. Just seconds under 4 hrs. The race is a nice flat course and I felt really good the entire time. Started conservatively, then slowly progressed. Had no intention of trying to BQ but once I got to mile 22 or so I realized it was a possibility if I could hang on. I ran right behind a woman I did not know and kept my pace stride for stride with her. That brought me in.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

I have been running since my 20’s. More regular after the birth of my first child (to help lose baby weight). Nothing in high school.

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

Hard to tell..probably well over 15, 000 miles.

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

I did not track miles but my guess is over 1,000.

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?


Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

Yes…it was a beginner marathon training plan. Can’t remember the name though.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

I only ran by myself and with a friend.

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

Yes, I lifted weights, took aerobic class, stationary bike, elliptical. Did not run every day at that time.

Did speed work play a role or specific workouts play a role in your training? If so, how?

At that time I would pick one or two runs to try to be progressive. Mainly by myself since my friend ran slower. Now though I try to do speedwork (tempos, repeats, 5k’s) once a week. I have to be careful because speedwork usually injures me. I just try to be smart. If I do any speedwork I will follow that with a much slower recovery run.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

You can do all of the work…put in the miles, do the speed work, tempos, long runs…but if you have to believe in yourself. Running is 90 percent mental. Train your brain to help accomplish the goal. Also be sure to allow easy runs to become a huge part of your routine so as not to burn out or become injured. Every run should have a purpose.


Cindy at the Emerald City ¼ Marathon in Dublin, Ohio
Cindy at the Emerald City ¼ Marathon in Dublin, Ohio

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