NYC Marathon Team Spot Check-In: Lilly Stevens

1. Tell us a little bit about how you came to be involved with NBR. What was your first run? How long have you been involved?  

Hi NBR!! I’d lived in Williamsburg as a life-long runner for about 5 years before I joined up with the team. I remember attending a Hellkatz Tuesday tempo workout, and Sue, Taylor, Matt and Anika were SO nice to me. Sue said, “Just keep showing up to workouts, you’ll get faster.” Boy was she right! I also began racing more heavily and began tracking my pace. Although my participation has waned since moving to central Brooklyn (and having a child), I’m still as committed as ever to complete my first full marathon in the fall.  

2. How is marathon training going? Are there any specific workouts that are really moving things along for you? Tell the world a good NBR long run story.

So far, marathon training has been “lovely” (using coach Karina’s favorite word).  The long runs by myself, however, have not been. It’s such a bummer that I moved out of north brooklyn before signing up for my first full, because I can’t rely on the regular weekly runs to have the company on my LRs. That said, this weekend Karina has nicely offered to plan the Narwhals route so that Just Southies can join up for the longer mileage. As far as a workouts go, joining the Just South Tuesday Tempo team has been the single best source of pace-dropping for my whopper spring season, where I PRed each half marathon I ran from March to May.  Shout outs to Dimitri and Jen!!

3. Which NBR runs are you attending regularly to train? Are there any NBR members who inspire you to train hard (er)?

I’d love to highlight coach Karina (Christiansen) who has agreed to be my marathon coach. I find her calm demeanor, occasional check-ins, and positive encouragement to be just the recipe I need to keep going.  There’ve been several times during humid/sweaty long runs where I kept repeating her phrase “there must be joy.” She also helps me work my parenting and dissertation schedule into my training plan. Karina is just the best and I’m so grateful that NBR brought us together.

4. What does it mean to be chose by your peers for a coveted NBR  marathon team spot?

It means just about EVERYTHING to me. I wear my singlet proudly when I go on long runs, and whomever I can brag to that I’m training, I make sure they know I got a team spot.  Moreover, one of the sources of strength that I pull from when I’m tired and slow is: imagining running through mile 12 on Nov. 4th and high-fiving everyone at the water table. Joe LaSalle, I’ll specifically be looking for YOU!!!

5. What do you plan on eating post-marathon? What about the nite before?

Hmmm, I love a good teriyaki chicken or white fish with brown rice and LOADS of sauteed veggies.  I usually do that as a recovery meal. However, the night after the marathon, I plan to go with my family to Glady’s Jerk Center (in my hood of Prospect Lefferts Gardens) and eat heaps of jerk chicken, rice, beans and DRINK ALL THE RUM PUNCH I CAN MANAGE!!!

6. What inspires and motivates you to run this year's NYC marathon?

My health, my son, my loving husband who has made sacrifices to help me get there, and also to my future self who can look back on this experience and say, “yup, Lil, ya did it.” I have also been close to tears while running half-marathons in the spring, just thinking about crossing the finish line in CP and what an empowering feeling that must be. Weirdly, imagining myself running the race has been a huge source of motivation.

7. In your head, what celebrity do you think you most resemble when you're running?

Lmao, what a question! Uh…. Olivia Munn? (cuz I’m super aspirational and verrrry humble)