For this week's East Nasty of the Week, being an ENOW is a family affair. On any given run, you find this native Nashvillian running with her husband, their daughter and sometimes their dog. Nasties, it is my pleasure to introduce you to Juanita Taylor!
Juanita was born in Nashville and, aside from a 2 year stint in Indiana, has lived here her whole life. She didn’t play a lot of sports in middle or high school, but she did play volleyball and softball with friends for fun.
Juanita attended Nashville Memorial LPN program and Columbia State Community College. She is an RN, CDS and has worked at the same hospital for 19 years. She started there in LPN school and continued after she went back to school for her RN.
Juanita started running in June 2011 with her husband Jeremy as part of their exercise routine. Their personal trainer talked them into doing the Potato to Tomato 5K program. After completing that, it seemed only natural to start running with East Nasty on Wednesday nights and they’ve been hooked ever since.
Juanita's biggest accomplishment in running is completing the Country Music Half Marathon which was her first, something that 3 years ago, she never had a desire to do. Running with the group that she trained with for the last 16 weeks made it even better, but beating her husband Jeremy at the finish line by 5 seconds was the real accomplishment.
The people that she has met along the way are what Juanita enjoys most about East Nasty, saying, "It’s a great community". Her most memorable East Nasty experience is running The Nasty and not having to walk up any of the hills, which was just this past year. Speaking of community, here is what some fellow East Nasties have to say about their friend (and wife), Juanita.
Jeremy Taylor, Juanita's husband, running partner and fellow ENOW, has this to say, "Where do I begin? Juanita fell into running the same way I did: Amanda Tungett, our personal trainer at the Y and now close friend. She tricked us into running by adding more and more of it to our training sessions at the Y. During the summer of 2011, she convinced us to participate in the Potato to Tomato 5K program. We did and, by the end, finally enjoyed it. Juanita is a natural runner and coach and encourages all around her with motivation and actions. Juanita coached the Potato to Tomato 5K program in 2012 and 2013, coached the 5K to 5 mile program in 2013 and is currently participating with me in the half training for her first half marathon on April 26. Running has become an important part of her life and is something she now looks forward to (even if she will not admit it). Juanita has embraced the East Nasty community and is always willing to lend a hand or a few words of encouragement."
Lori Davenport-Parker, "I am happy to say that Jeremy and Juanita have been long time friends of mine. We first started running together with the Potato to Tomato 5K program and East Nasty 3 years ago, and we have run countless races together since that time. Juanita is always the first one to stop and walk beside someone who is struggling. You can usually find her cheering on those around her. For me, it is almost annoying that she can stop and tie a shoe, take off a jacket, fix her hair, and easily catch right back up and even pass me without batting an eye. Just when I think I will pass her, there she is! If she ever gets serious, she is going to be a runner to be reckoned with. She is a lot faster than she thinks she is! It doesn’t hurt that she is the kindest and most giving person on the planet. I am happy to call Juanita one of my best friends and being ENOW is well-deserved!"
Jeremy Payne, "Every runner needs someone to push them. Sometimes, that's someone on the side-lines. For me, that's someone running right next to me named Juanita. This is what makes Juanita such a great running companion. She has an uncanny ability to see everyone around her, and - when they are struggling - she positions herself right next to them and simply runs. She often doesn't say a word. She just matches you in that moment until you are good to go. In her time with the Nasties, it has been awesome to watch her transform into a runner and, selfishly, into a great friend. -- Jeremy 2"
When Juanita's not running, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading and gardening.
Juanita, East Nasty is lucky to have you, especially as a coach. This post is well deserved. Congrats and welcome to the ENOW club!