RunningLane Athlete Highlight: Shannon Million
This week we are highlighting our first athlete of 2020. Shannon Million had a huge 2019 and has already had a great start to 2020 with a new 10k PR! Shannon is an awesome example of bringing her entire family in on her running journey. She hopes that the lessons she learns on the road help teach her children about resilience and working towards what they want to achieve. Get to know a little more about Shannon!
How long have you been running and how did you get started?
I started running track in 6th grade and high school cross country in 7th grade. I had always dreamed of running in college but ended up with some significant injuries that kept me sidelined for the last 2 years of high school and very burned out and discouraged. I picked it back up after the birth of my first daughter 6 years ago and I fell in love all over again!
What are you currently training for?
My goal race is the Eugene Marathon at the end of April this year.
What are some goals you have for 2020 racing?
My big goal is always the elusive BQ! This will be my 4th attempt- I’ve gotten so close and qualified once but didn’t make the final time cutoff. I’d also love to tackle an ultra this fall.
What was your running highlight of 2019?
There were so many special moments during the Marine Corps Marathon for me. I ran with a fundraising team to honor a cross country teammate that was killed in Iraq so it was all around an incredibly emotional and memorable race. The weather was pretty intense- pouring rain, wind and a lot of flooding on the course. After the Blue Mile which is just this indescribable, raw experience, we were trudging through ankle deep water and heavy rain. The guy running next to me held his arms out to the sky and yelled “It’s great to be alive!” It just made me feel so present in the moment and thankful for the ability to be there and be running. I’ll never forget that!
What is your favorite race?
Anything on the trails, on the road probably the 10K. I have an ongoing love/hate relationship with marathons.
Where is your favorite place to run?
Red River Gorge which is part of the Daniel Boone National Forest in eastern Kentucky- I could run there for days. It’s beautiful and brutal and amazing, run all over it if you ever get the chance. And I love taking people there for the first time if anyone needs a tour guide!
What is your favorite running memory (s)?
Pacing one of my best training buddies for the last 30 miles of the Warhammer 100 miler a few years ago was awesome. I loved being able to share that joy with her at the end! And seeing my mom and stopping to give her a hug at mile 25 in the NYC marathon in 2016. And anytime my daughters and husband are waiting for me at the finish line:)
How long have you been with RunningLane and why did you get a coach?
I think it’s been almost a year and a half now- I saw an article by Will on a friend’s page about what it takes to BQ and was a few months post baby #2 and trying to make a plan of attack to get back at it. I love the outside accountability and expertise and taking the stress out of trying to put together a training plan.
Why do you run?
Goodness so many reasons- I love those peaceful moments in the morning with my training buddies that have become my closest friends. It’s become a time that is precious to me to be able to connect with them without the distractions of everyday life. And I also run to set an example for my daughters- my whole family is so supportive of my BQ journey and they have been there for my failures and successes- it’s important for me to involve them and hopefully teach them to be resilient and to go after what you want even if there’s no guarantee!