I'd like to introduce you to our newest East Nasty of the Week (ENOW), & one of my favorite East Nasties, Kim Stokes-Lanier! I first met Kim when she lead our pace group on a Wednesday night run, but I really got to know her last summer when we both coached the Potato to Tomato Couch to 5K runners. Kim is great. She's encouraging, supportive, generous & knowledgeable. You immediately like her & trust her.
If you haven't met Kim, then you haven't been running enough. I talked to Kim's husband, Rob & he said, "She is insane about running. I look out the window on the coldest, snowiest, rainiest days & say "no way!" But not her, she heads out the door and gets her miles in."
Kim grew up as an Army brat moving every 4 years - NC, SC, NY, & MA before heading off to college.
In high school, Kim was pretty much a straight-A stoner (ha!), which is really ironic since she then went to the Coast Guard Academy for college.
When asked when she started running, Kim said that she joined a boot camp group to help deal with the stress of working for a company that was becoming completely dysfunctional. The instructor was a runner & gradually pushed most of the group into running, starting with 5Ks & gradually working up to half & full marathons. Kim says, "It was a great group! Got me to quit smoking after 20+ years just so I could run faster & farther (the #1 & #2 reasons on my Quit Smoking Journal)."
Kim went to college at the Coast Guard Academy in New London, CT. When asked to describe her experience, she says, "True military academy experience with formations before every meal, room & uniform inspections daily, Fri drill review, etc. for all four years. First year “fun” also included bracing up for meals, marching in formation to/from classes, & double-timing everywhere. I got lucky in my year group that we got to sail USCGB Eagle to Australia when I was a sophomore & Europe when I was a junior & again as a senior. And yes, I went through the uniquely nautical experience to become a *Golden Shellback."
*A Golden Shellback is a person who has crossed the Equator at the 180th meridian (International Date Line). It's a rare status.
After college, Kim went to graduate school at the University of New Orleans, which she says, "was a completely different experience with working full-time & going to school at night with weekend group projects. Much, much tamer."
Kim has lived in Nashville about 2-1/2 years. She picked Nashville because she had a project putting in cell service at the Capitol & thought it would be a great city to live in if she ever got the opportunity. Luckily for us, she was able to find a way to make that happen.
If you're friends with Kim on Facebook, then like me, you probably wonder what in the world she does for a living since she seems to live at airports. Kim says, "Easiest way to explain it is that I help cell phones work inside buildings. I work from home but travel a lot to help sell the equipment that goes into the building. These days, I provide technical support to the sales team & also help to develop the programs that support sales (training/certification, competitive analysis, inventory levels, etc.). I honestly like what I do and would probably do it for free if I could afford it."
Kim's biggest accomplishment in running was training for the Marine Corps Marathon last year without a training group. She said, "Doing a 22 mile long run on your own is HARD! I’m so glad that I’ve been able to train with the East Nasties this spring!"
Kim heard about East Nasty via a Google search when she first moved to Nashville. Describing her East Nasty experience, Kim says, "I knew I needed to find a running group as part of making Nashville my home, but I didn’t know at the time how much it would mean to me. I’ve met some of the nicest, most generous & supportive people through the East Nasty running club! I even ended up buying a home in East Nashville after seeing how great the neighborhoods were on those first runs! And I like being able to give back a little through the charities (shoe & clothes donations) & P2T5K program. I hope to become one of the half-marathon pacers one of these years."
Kim's other hobbies include reading, eating, drinking, & generally enjoying newlywed life with her husband Rob.
Speaking of Rob, here is what he had to say when I told him Kim was our newest ENOW, "She really gets a thrill out of helping other runners. She started running not so long ago & remembers how hard it can be to keep going when your feet hurt, everyone is faster than you, & you wonder what the heck you are doing. She had people who motivated her when she struggled & she likes to return the favor. Her best runs are those where she can help someone else succeed. She will come home with a big smile on her face & tell me how he or she gutted it out. She helped train the Tomato to 5k group for the Tomato Festival 5K & she ran the whole way with them. She truly basks in the success of other runners!! She is really an inspiring person & I count myself lucky everyday that she is my wife!!!"
Ditto. Kim, you are awesome & East Nasty is lucky to have you. Congratulations & welcome to the ENOW club!