Saturday Spotlight- Mary Conrad

Mary Conrad: Age 28
Occupation: Nanny (to the most incredible 2 y/o and running buddy ever!) and Certified School Counselor
Born: Valley Stream
Currently Live in St James

A very Happy and Safe St. Patick’s Day Weekend to you all! I feel very blessed and privileged to have been asked by Lou to share my story with you all. First of all, thank you all for being such an incredible support network and positive influence on myself and those in my life. We go out there and do what we love and don’t necessarily realize the difference it makes for each other and for our families. A great big Thank You to Mr. Lou LaFleur for bringing such fabulous people together and creating such a warm and nurturing environment for runners and walkers of all ages, backgrounds, experiences and fitness levels.
I am the fourth of five children, born to Joseph and Joan Conrad in 1987. Having come after 3 boys, I tended towards sports and horsing around, always looking to be one of the boys and hang around my older brothers, whom I’ve always idolized. Throughout my younger years, I played baseball (usually on all boys teams) and basketball. By 7th grade I’d decided I didn’t want to play these sports anymore but I stills wanted to keep moving, this is when I first found Cross Country and Track and Field.

From grades 7-12, I ran cross country and HATED every step of the way! Honestly, I only did it because of the friendships built and the inspiration I felt being in the presence of welcoming and exceptional athletes. I was never built to be fast and I was not as dedicated to excelling as those around me. Even though I would dread practice everyday, I always looked forward to seeing my teammates and being involved in the experiences shared.

I went LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA and became a Special Education teacher, working with students with Autism. After some moving around, I ended up back in Bay Shore and began working here. I had my two beautiful dogs and began walking them for 2-4 hours everyday, mostly before and after work. I found that the increased walking made me feel great and after moving to Puerto Rico, I really jumpstarted my new fitness goals. I biked to work, ran with my staff most mornings and went to the gym for personal training group classes 5 days a week. I have never been in better shape in my LIFE and I FELT GREAT!

I was training for my first Half Marathon with some great friends in PR when I was laid up with Dengue and unable to run the Run LIke A Diva Half Marathon. I was so upset. Shortly after that, I decided it was time to come back to NY and finish my Graduate Degree (In school counseling). I set a goal to run my first marathon within two years, and joined GLIRC. After seeing the promotion for a New Years group run on the hills, I figured I’d try it out and I was HOOKED.

In 2014, I ran my finally ran the Divas Half Marathon with my friends from PR. I ran my first Marathon last May for my 28th birthday (birthday on the 2nd, race was on the 3rd). It’s been a rough go since then, trying to keep my goals on track but after finally finishing my Masters this December, I am working on training for my next full Marathon!

I couldn’t thank you all enough for being incredible people and allowing me to share my story. I love you all and look forward to seeing you on the hills!!!

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