Saturday Spotlight – Tara Carrick (3/14/20)

Saturday Spotlight

Name: Tara Carrick

Age: 40

Marital status: Separated

Kids: 1 girl (8yo)

Occupation: Dietitian

Hobbies: Obstacle racing, Running, watching investigation discovery, shopping

Hometown: Sayvile

Current Town: Sayville

College: Oneonta State (BS), CWPost (MS)

Favorite race: Not sure but love 10k & 1/2 marathon distance most

Frequent Running Spots: Blydenburg, streets of Sayville & seldom hills of course

Personal Message: Thanks Lou LaFleur for asking me to represent the wonderful SHW this week. Hello Warriors and Hillbillies, I’m this week’s Warrior of the week!

I’ll start from the beginning of my running experience. It began when I was in middle school and was forced to run a mile warm up before cheer practice every day. Eventually it got easier and made each cheer routine better as I built my endurance up. Then onto high school cheer. There was one season that we didn’t cheer which wound up in springtime. So I figured let me join the track team. They recruited me to be a race walker. Little did I know most of my practice time was going to be with the long-distance runners. Oh boy, I never did give up. The coach would run with us but most likely to make sure I did not get left behind. The shortest distance we ran was probably 3 miles and up to 10 miles. I learned quick how to increase my pace and not feel like I was going to die each practice. After high school I pretty much stopped running outside.

Then onto college, my first year was a blur. I was a new student away from home living on my own. So not much exercise was involved. By my sophomore year I decided to join the cheer team, pledge a sorority and therefore started becoming more active with running outside. No races just sporadic runs when the weather was nice. Not too many nice days since it was upstate, and we saw more winter months. That’s when I started running on the treadmill. It was not nearly as challenging, but I could set a distance and go! I think treadmills are for lazy runners, but it gets the legs moving. I continued this for most of college. I ran outside when I was home for the summers. Just set out and run until I was tired or about to pass out. Long before all these cool smart watches which map your runs.

I stayed a lazy runner on the treadmill for years because by the time I came home work it was dark out. So about 5 years ago I started getting into obstacle course racing! OK, at first I thought this is crazy, hiking up mountains 3+, 10+, 15+ miles with 25-35 obstacles. Well I realized my running needed to improve. Back to the road I went. All of my race friends didn’t live close enough to run with. So back I went setting different distances and hitting the road again. Along with running I found an obstacle gym to join in Deer Park where I met Jennifer Rowley Heymach.

She had mentioned this running club seldom hills warriors. They run almost every Sunday and other days as well. All levels of runners. She asked me to come down. Unfortunately, shortly after I broke my foot.

Was with my daughter working out and stepped wrong. Clean brake of my fifth metatarsal but most miserable 3+ months of my life. Couldn’t work, couldn’t run and it was the beginning of the summer (no beach). I’m a beach bum. I was in a boot non weight bearing for 10 weeks. I had already signed up for the diva dash 1/2 marathon and it was going to be my first 1/2. Once my doctor gave me the OK that I was 100% healed and I could run again, I ran. I grew up with the owner of the Sayville running company. I went to him and asked for his help because there was only 5 weeks before the 1/2 marathon. I was going to finish and run the whole thing. Plus my mom was going to be there waiting for me at the end. The plan worked and I completed my first 1/2 in 2:11.

As I was getting more into the OCR aspect of races, I decided it was time to join seldom hill warriors running club! So, one Sunday about a year ago I met Jennifer and a few others at the pole. It was like nothing else I have experienced but I realized I needed this in my life. Those hills are no joke, a great training ground! I loved it. I favor warmer weather running but I’m trying to push myself outside that comfort zone and do colder races and runs!

I did a few races with SHW. The Islip 8k was great considering Lou was just ahead of me the whole race. I was just trying to keep up but it pushed me to break my personal best. Also robs run was so much fun! I was paired with Steve Frankle and Rich Sparaci. I had a great time.

I recently had foot surgery, so I have been out of commission for the past two months. I will be back to the hills hopefully in the next few weeks coming up. Hope to see you all there and meet new running friends! Glad to have joined and happy to be a part of SHW.