Member Spotlight: Katerena Moustakis

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Where do you live?
Garden City, New York (Long Island)

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
2016 TCS NYC Marathon

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
I get to run with a group of people who are equally as moved by the Team for Kids mission. Just the notion of adding some meaning behind every butt-kicking mile I run moves me, to help provide kids with programs that will benefit them for a lifetime.

Where is your favorite place to run and why?
Cedar Creek Park to Jones Beach Bike path. It is a long trail along the parkway with the unmistakable Jones Beach Tower in the background, fishing along the side, small hills, boats passing you by, ornamental grass, views of the water, fresh air, and friendly faces. I love it because of that! Additionally, if you run or even bike far enough, you can enter the beach without paying for parking. Win! Moreover, after a long run, there is nothing like putting your feet in the water!

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
A good playlist (for me) is absolutely essential. I start almost every run with the same song, Tim Segreto’s “I’ll Watch Your Back” (Sounds like – Oasis / Coldplay) it sets the tone. However, I usually listen to The Prodigy, Major Lazer, Rihanna, or any song produced by Calvin Harris to keep my legs moving. I love music!

What is your favorite post-run meal?
I usually go for a very large salad believe it or not. I literally reach for a small to medium size cake mixing bowl and throw lettuce, tomato, avocado, one hard boiled egg, Kalamata olives, dates and mukimame in it; a pinch of salt and one tablespoon of olive oil and I’m good to go!

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
I honestly always loved running because I played soccer from the time I was in grade school. However, my real relationship with running did not begin until the summer of entering my third year in college. I had slipped and fallen down concrete steps, landing so terribly that everything just shifted in my back. I fractured my tailbone, herniated some discs, suffered from nerve damage and could not walk properly for quite some time. I went to physical therapy for a while, and eventually just told myself: “Look, snap out of it, get up, get out, you’ll be fine, you’ll get better.” Eventually, walking turned back into running and has been my go to cathartic release since college, throughout Law School and every day since.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
I have to start running, cross the start line and/or the finish line with my right foot. It is a Greek tradition that my family follows. Essentially, every New Year, or when entering into someone’s house or anywhere for the first time, we enter on the “right foot” to bestow good luck.

Why did you choose to run this event?
Back when I was in grade school, schools were just starting to implement healthy choices for both drink and food options (e.g., Sports drinks and Water as opposed to Soda). I think it is super important to suggest or at least provide an opportunity for youth to make healthy choices. Additionally, because of TFK’s mission, kids, not just by chance, will get the opportunity to educate themselves on physical fitness and empower themselves through these character-building programs.

Tell us a little more about yourself
I love to stay active, whether it is through running, cycling, swimming or just taking my dog out for a long walk. I also love to indulge in new foods and treat myself once in a while. On my downtime, I like to unwind with a classic Horror movie or any Quentin Tarantino flick. I know what you’re thinking – who unwinds with horror movies? This girl. Thanks to my older brother!

Connect with Katerena via the sites below:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kymkitty/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Katerena.moustakis

Member Spotlight: Phil Patterson Jr.

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Where do you live?
North Lauderdale, Florida

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
The 2016 TCS New York City Marathon!

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
The fact that by choosing to run with Team for Kids it’s no longer just about me and my excitement to run this particular race but the that it’s also helping out others because of the fundraising.

What is your favorite place to run and why?
I would say the beach just because the weather is almost always beautiful and you can jump right in the water to cool off whenever you want to.

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
Imagine Dragons dominate my running playlist. After that it’s a lot of Alternative, Rock, Dance and BPM/Electronic singles. Stuff that gets me moving. There’s also a guy by the name of The Ginger Runner who makes instrumentals that are nice to run to, especially for the moments of needing to relax mentally on the run.

What is your favorite post-run meal?
A cheeseburger and French fries with a coke zero.

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
June 2013. I was 95 pounds heavier, going to the ER every 6-8 months because of back spasms and had enough. I knew I needed to lose weight to take pressure off of my back and discs so I started running.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
I always have a moment of prayer right before they play or sing the national anthem. I thank God for giving me the passion to run, keeping me safe during my training and then I just pray that he helps me run my best, that me and everyone in the race will be safe. I find that it helps keep me humble and supportive of those running. I know there are so many people who wish they could run but can’t so it helps me appreciate it all even more.

Why did you choose to run this event?
After the Haiti earthquake I went on 3 trips as a volunteer/missionary to help the country out. That required fundraising and the end result was life changing. I felt like it was time to do something different other than just run a race and always heard about Team for Kids and the NY races. So I wanted to add a special purpose to this race since it means a lot to me to finally get to do it and hopefully this blesses many others to find their passion in running as well.

Tell us a little more about yourself
I was born and raised in Florida, My dad is from New York (Buffalo). I am a huge sports fan and love music. If I could be in one place daily it would be the beach because I love the ocean (that includes fishing). I work at a running specialty store called Runner’s Depot. I also host my own running website where I interview and feature elite runners to share with my followers to provide tips and suggestions for runners of all kinds. I have been married for 2 years now and I’m most popular locally for my beard as it gets the attention at all the races and people recognize me more and more just because of it.

Connect with Phil via the links below:

Instagram: https://instagram.com/heelstriker954

Twitter: https://twitter.com/heelstriker954

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/philpattersonjr

Personal: https://www.heelstriker954.com

Member Spotlight: Melissa Jackson Holloway

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Where do you live?
Yorktown, IN

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
The 2016 TCS New York City Marathon

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
The support on the course from other Team members and from the kids that actually benefit from the program.

What is your favorite place to run and why?
I prefer an outdoor run over the devil’s sidewalk (treadmill) 99.9% of the time. I love to run my neighborhood and local running trials – especially the Cardinal Greenway here in IN and the American Tobacco Trial in NC. My favorite race location to date is my trip to the Paris Marathon in 2015.

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
I don’t run with music often but when I do I go for up-tempo hip hop or rap or Zumba music (I am an instructor).

What is your favorite post-run meal?
Starbucks (that’s a meal right?) or breakfast foods.

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
My relationship with running began with a treadmill in the Green Bay, WI east side YMCA in 2008. I joined the Y in an effort to lose weight and to improve my fitness. I would go to the Y first thing in the am and walk on the treadmill after winter weather pushed me indoor. I am a fast walker and one of the trainers told me that I walked as fast as many people run and that I should try running intervals. He also introduced me to the Couch to 5k program and I set out to complete that program during the winter months and signed up for the first spring race that I could that would coincide with my completion of the program. I completed the program (all indoors) and so my first outside running experience was on race day in April, 2008. It was really different but I was able to run the entire race and cried like a baby at the finish line. I then went back to the couch and gain 50 lbs that I had already lost and so rediscovered running again in 2012 through Black Girls Run?

Running has helped me maintain a 150+ weight loss over the last 4-5 years.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
1. Never wear anything new on race day – especially the race shirt provided in advance of race completion
2. I try to eat the same meal the night before – salmon and brown rice or salmon and a baked sweet potato and the morning of a race (peanut butter and banana sandwich with black coffee)
3. Taking a picture of flat Melissa before the race and a prayer at the start line.

Why did you choose to run this event?
Overweight kids become overweight adults and I know this first hand. I did not discover running until I was in my 40’s and wish that I knew at 10 what I know now regarding the importance of health and fitness and the awesome sense of accomplishment that you get from running. I want every child to learn that lesson NOW rather than later.

Tell us a little more about yourself
I am a 46 year old married mom of 1; My 17 year old son heads to college in the fall; I recently relocated to IN from NC and have also lived in NY, NJ and Wisconsin; I am an attorney in higher education; a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.; former ambassador for Black Girls Run! Raleigh (NC), a member of the National Black Marathoners Association; a Marathon Maniac; a Half Fanatic. Since 2012 – I have completed one ultra, 10 marathons, 20+ half marathons and countless other races of shorter distances.

Runner Spotlight: Luis M. Tejada

Where do you live?
Bronx, NY

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
The 2016 TCS New York City Marathon

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
I’m most excited about running with Team for Kids because I feel that nowadays children don’t take advantage of playing outside and playing sports as much as they should, like when I was younger. Back then, we didn’t have social media or anything like that, so I like to be involved with the well-being of children.

What is your favorite place to run and why?
My favorite place to run is in the streets of city I was born and grew up in–New York City (aka The Concrete Jungle). It’s the city that raised me, so-to-speak, and I absolutely love it and wouldn’t trade it!

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
My playlist is very eclectic and consists of everything from classical to hip-hop/rap to punk rock to electronic

What is your favorite post-run meal?
Other than a nice strawberry/banana/peanut butter/chocolate protein shake, I love a nice salmon filet and side of quinoa.

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
It began in high school, where I didn’t necessarily run track & field, but I just loved being active throughout. I consider running to be true freedom, where it’s just you, your music playlist (if applicable), and the road/surface on which you’re running.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
I say a quick prayer before running or working out so that it will provide me with additional mental fortitude to get it done!

Why did you choose to run this event?
I feel as though not many kids nowadays take advantage of physical sports while at an early age due to a variety of factors, whether it be the increase in social media outlets & usage, funding cuts in school programming, etc. I feel that Team for Kids is doing great work and making great strides to provide such opportunities to children.

Tell us a little more about yourself:
I’m just a guy who loves to be physically active and participate in all sorts of competitions and races. Always with a smile on my face!🙂

Runner Spotlight: Cindy Harris

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What made you decide to run the TCS New York City Marathon with Team for Kids?
I live in Santa Barbara and have for 61 years since coming here to UCSB. I am running/ walking/ jogging the 2016 NYC marathon. This will be my fourth one, although I was entered and was already in New York for the 2012 marathon. After that was cancelled I lost my momentum for marathons. This year my son is running so I decided to give it another try!

A family friend of my son’s, Tom Horton, is the one who put the bug in my ear. In the summer of 2008 he was visiting and I asked him if many people walked the marathon and he replied: “more people walk than run” so I decided I would see if I could do it. I chose TFK because I strongly believe in their philosophy. Preventing juvenile problems before they begin is so very important. My son is also running with TFK as he did last year.

Do you have any running rituals?
I don’t know that I have any set in stone running rituals. I just do it. I believe in exercise and all the benefits it brings. I also go to the gym two days a week.  I come to NYC several times a year to visit my children and grandchildren and always look forward to the six mile loop in Central Park!  In fact, I will be there in mid-April for grandparent’s day at St Bernard’s. As for any other history I have been married for 56 years. I work as a garden designer for a landscape contractor here in Santa Barbara, which here in California is pretty much a year around job. I keep doing it because I love it and see no reason to stop.

Member Spotlight: Candice Knuteson

 

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Where do you live?
Wauwatosa, WI

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
The TCS New York City Marathon!

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
I don’t have many regrets in life, but one regret I do have is that as a kid I did not participate in any sports. I think now that I am so active in my community both at the gym and with my local Saturday morning running group I look back and wonder what I really missed out on by not being in sports when I was growing up. Being able to provide kids an opportunity to experience fitness and run with the support of an NYRR program means that these kids will not make the same mistake I made. This is very exciting. Running has been life altering for me so providing an opportunity like this for kids is an absolute game changer for those that may not have the support or resources.

What is your favorite place to run and why?
My favorite place is anywhere that I haven’t run yet. I love to travel and run different places for the experience which is why NYC marathon has been on my to-do list now for 5 years. The top three locations I have run that I absolutely loved was Brisbane Australia, Moscow Russia, and Big Sur in California. I also have some great places on my list this year beside the NYC marathon including Rim to Rim in the Grand Canyon this May and The Rut a mountain run held on Big Sky Resort property in September. This keeps me motivated.

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
Yes I am a runner that needs some music while I run. Artists include Foo Fighters, Kid Rock, Eminem, Maroon 5, Eric Church, and Chris Stapleton. I have different genre playlists set up for different running events and notice that for the trail I tend to go more country and alternative whereas with road I tend to go more rock and hip-hop/rap.

What is your favorite post-run meal?
I LOVE to eat, it is part of the reason I love running – the reward! On Saturday and Sunday after regular runs (10 miles or less) usually eggs or baked oatmeal with a good coffee. Longer runs especially during build up it is anything that is highly caloric that I have been craving. Could be duck, fried chicken, chicken wings, mac and cheese, stuffed burger, lasagna with buttery garlic bread, Ribeye steak…..man you name it.

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
It was 2009 is when I started running. I worked with a couple runners who needed a third person for Lakefront Marathon relay that October. I refused and stated that I wasn’t a runner but they assured me that I had plenty of time to become a runner (6 months) and they would help me. I had the first 7 miles of the 26.2 mile relay which was overwhelming. To tackle the challenge I signed up for a running class, learn how to run an 5K, at a local park where I started running with the walk run method and then that summer I started doing 5ks and then 10ks to build up my running confidence for the event. At the end of the event my friends husband bought me a Lakefront Marathon coffee mug and said next year Id being doing the marathon. I didn’t believe him but he was right. It was the last year of the Lakefront Marathon relay so I was grateful for that experience.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
Not really, the normal stuff like don’t wear the race gear until after the race, don’t try anything new the day of, eat a bland meal the night before and get to bed early.

Why did you choose to run this event?
As I wrote above that running has been life altering for me. I didn’t run and I didn’t participate in any sports growing up. I now regret that. I am connected to TFK’s mission because teaching youth about physical fitness and having them experience its health benefits can help youth avoid health problems, it builds their self-esteem and confidence, helps develop interpersonal and motor skills, reduces anxiety and depression, improves sleep, etc. In addition, it can help them to stay active throughout their lifetime and make better choices for their future.

Connect with Candice via the links below:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/candwmn/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CandyPants_HD
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/candice-knuteson-488a687
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/candice.knuteson 

Member Spotlight: Beth Drake

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Where do you live?
Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin

What event are you running with Team for Kids?
The TCS New York City Marathon!

What excites you most about running your event with Team for Kids?
Being able to support kids and give them the opportunities to reach their full potential.

What is your favorite place to run and why?
My favorite place to run is around my parent’s lake at their cabin. It is beautiful and calming.

If you run with music, what are your favorite artists or songs to listen to?
I listen to an array of songs from old to new, just no metal!

What is your favorite post-run meal?
Burger!

When did your relationship with running begin and why?
About 2-3 years ago. I joined Moms On The Run in Eau Claire and they sparked something in me that I will forever be grateful. The support and friendships are amazing!

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions, if so, please explain?
Laying out my outfit the night before and having my breakfast ready (PB&J and a banana) and everything else I need. Spaghetti the night before!

Why did you choose to run this event?
I am a teacher, so I believe in and love children. They learn healthy habits early in life and the more we can guide them and help them make good choices the better for them in the long run.

Tell us a little more about yourself:
I am a 2 year old teacher and have been teaching for almost 10 years now. I am married to my husband Jeremy and we have a son named Theo. He is the light of our lives! We will be adopting our second child in the near future!

Connect with Beth via the link below:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Beth.drake