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Thursday, November 12, 2015

Getting To Know CED Beth Style



Meet Beth Herndon


Beth and husband Greg



Cleveland Elite Development, "CED", is a group from the greater Cleveland area that was set up by Glenn Andrews a number of years ago. This is the group I run for, and love every step I have shared with them. Glenn is our coach and in the upcoming weeks I want to give you all a chance to meet the wonderful, weird, strong, passionate ladies and gentlemen that comprise our incredible group.  We laugh, we have fun, and we work hard to reach some pretty ambitious goals. "Misery loves company" holds very true to our hearts as we chase down PR's, Olympic Trials qualifying times, and even a World Record.  Speaking of world records, I would like to introduce you all to our World Record Holder...in the Beer Mile, Beth Herndon.


Beth winning the "Beer Mile World Championships" in a world record 6:17
Beth grew up in a place called "Fort Fun" undoubtedly named after her.  It is more commonly known as Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Beth started running in 6th grade for the social aspect, Beth grew up around running with her parents both running and coaching. She played soccer her freshman and sophomore years in high school, but found her talents really lied in running. I am very glad she did because CED wouldn't be the same without her! She went on from Snider High School to compete for Washington University in St. Louis, where she was a two time UAA Conference Champion, and a 2 time All American placing 11th and 5th in the National XC Championship in '05 and '06 respectively. Beth is currently a professor in the Geology Department at Kent State University.  When there is time for some fun she says her and her husband, Greg, love to eat good food, drink good beer, and they enjoy biking, hiking, and canoeing. 

Beth's PR's
Mile- 5:03
Beer Mile -6:17
3k -9:52
5k-16:53
10k- 35:34
Half Marathon- 1:15:43
Marathon- 2:39:43

I asked Beth some questions, and here is what she had to say.

Q.What Brought you to join CED?

A. "I moved to northeast Ohio in August 2014 to start a faculty position at Kent State University. Before moving, my husband and I visited the area and stopped by a local running store (Second Sole - Akron) to get the inside scoop on the running scene. We had the incredible fortune of meeting the one and only Becki Spellman there, who immediately asked me my marathon PR and then told me to join CED. Needless to say, I did!"

Q. How do you think being a member of CED is beneficial in helping you to meet your goals?

A. "CED has really benefited my training in three ways. First, weekly track workouts hold me accountable. No matter how busy things are at work, I drop everything and go to the track on Tuesday - no excuses. Second, I haven't had such a large group of equally-fit people to train with since college. Our workouts have pushed me to go faster than I thought possible. Finally, CED is just such an incredible group of people, and being around them has bolstered my attitude during what could have been a tough transition to a new home." 

Q. What are those goals?

A. "I am always striving to be a better runner. I don't know what that limit is, but I will chip away at my PRs for as long as I can. Short-term, I'm training for the Olympic marathon trials and would love to run 2:37 or faster, but ultimately I'm going out there to compete."


Q. What types of workouts are your favorite and why?

A. "I have a soft spot for long, half-marathon paced workouts. Something like 6 x mile or 4 x 2 mi that gets you in that steady zone of effort without dropping into 5k-10k pace (which I consider to be very speedy). Just not on the track, please."

Q. What types of workouts are the hardest for you, and why do you suffer through them?

A.  "I suffer through the 1k-2k length repeats at 5k pace. If my teammates were slower, maybe I wouldn't suffer so much. 400 m repeats I can wrap my head around...even 800 m is okay, but there's a sweet spot of agony before I reach my slow/long comfort zone." 

Q. Do you have a favorite running quote and if so what is it?

A. " 'From now on, I'll connect the dots my own way.'
Not a running quote, but a good philosophy for life. I can be pretty obstinate at times." 

Q. If you could go back and meet yourself your sophomore year in HS what wisdom would your impart on yourself as an athlete?

A . "You are capable of more than you think right now! Also, stop eating that low-calorie crap food. Just eat good food." 

Q. What is your favorite race? Why? What mental tips can you offer for racing this distance well?

A.  "I love the half-marathon. It suits my long-distance inclinations, but I can still walk afterwards. I think consistent 2 hour long runs are a key component of being race ready for the half. Add to that a weekly track session (e.g., 5 x 1200 m is a killer) and tempo (3 or 4 x 10 min) and you'll be good to go! During the race, it helps to key into a pace and stay consistent through the first half. Then I like to push the pace down as far as I can go..."turning the screws" if you will."

Q. What do you think about during all those 90+ mile weeks while running?

A. "I think through problems, but I'm not sure I reach any solutions. It's easy to let your mind wander through a run, but hard to get it to do anything useful." 


Beth competing for Washington University in St. Louis 


Look at that smile!  What's not to love?!


Beth competing for CED at USA Club National XC 2014

Beth has become an integral part of our team in more ways than I can count.  She keeps us in line, makes us laugh, is good at reminding us to be smart, and has crushed some new PR's along the way.  I am glad my creepy questioning brought you to see the true beauty that is Cleveland Elite Development. Look for Beth, one of CED's four athletes, competing in the Olympic Trials in Los Angeles this February!  We can't wait to watch her chase down that 2:37!  We love you Beth. 

Follow Beth on social media
Twitter - emh824


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