Gail Edwards wasn't always a daily runner.
As a young mom, it seemed like there wasn't time for that.
👶You know...not between meal prep, diaper duty, housework, shopping, school activities, and everything else.
She liked being a mom, homemaker, and working when the kids were older, but the void of exercise and self-care didn't sit right with her.
🏃♀️"I needed something for myself," says Gail.
"I needed a way to just get away and take a break for a little while. So I started running, and I just got hooked."
It's never too late to start.
Gail started out running just a few miles at a park near her home, but it turned into something a lot bigger.
Here's what happened...
More than a year ago, I noticed this older woman running along the Springwater Trail near Gresham, Ore.
On frequent Saturday-long runs, she was always there...consistent, moving forward...determined.
👋Runner's etiquette = smile and wave.
And that's what I did for months.
But the ever-curious journalist in me knows...Every Runner Has a Story...
Sure, lots of people run.
But the daily runner is far more rare.
Gail's running habit started a long time ago. And at 67 years old, she's still going, typically logging 80 miles a week with a daily long run and afternoon walk.
Gail started running the 2-mile Glendover Nature Trail in northeast Portland when her two boys were in school.
"I met some really nice people," says Gail.
"And then I started thinking about running a marathon."
But something bigger than a 26.2-mile finish motivated her to be a daily runner...
😀Something she realized, she can't live without...
"When you run, it helps you solve problems," says Gail. "I run in the morning, and use the time to help me plan the day."
"There's something about being out there by yourself that's really powerful. And it just makes me happy."
😍To make her running habit a little sweeter...
Her husband has been her biggest fan...
"It took him a minute to get used to all the running, but he knows it makes me happy," says Gail.
"Now if I'm a little grumpy, he's the one who says, 'Maybe you should go for a run."
Gail ramped up her mileage as daily runner and signed up for her first marathon: The Portland Marathon.
She made friends with the owner of the Portland Running Company, where she, learned a lot about...
Going into her first marathon years ago, she kind of thought it would be a one-and-done experience, but that's not what happened...
"The camaraderie among other marathon runners was incredible," says Gail.
"And there were so many people on the course who showed up to cheer on the runners."
"Everything about the Portland Marathon is amazing...the food, the finish line, and everything they do for the runners."
"I've done the Portland Marathon quite a few times, and it's still one of my favorites."
Boston or bust...
That first marathon finish got her hooked on chasing more 26.2-mile finishes, including...
She's finished the Boston Marathon multiple times, including the time she walked the entire course...
"The third time I ran the Boston Marathon, something happened," says Gail.
"I just decided, I'm going to go and see what I can do," says Gail.
"That year, I walked the entire Boston Marathon. It was hard. It's the only marathon I've ever walked."
"I've never cancelled or quit a marathon. I just told myself, 'You can do this."
If you're a daily runner like Gail, chances are pretty good you don't want to miss a day even on a business trip or family vacation.
Over the years, she's fit in a long list of races (like the Maui Marathon) and runs while traveling to places like...
🌎San Francisco, Calif.
While Gail and her husband don't travel as much as they used to, she racked up a lot of miles, races and memories mixing travel with running.
Gail balanced family, work, and running for years (her boys are 42 and 38 now).
Today, the schedule isn't as jam-packed as it used to me. But she's never been one to sit around
"I've always been sort of a hyper person," says Gail.
"It took me a minute to relax a little after we retired. But I still like to have a plan to start the day."
Her daily plan includes:
"On average, I do about 80 miles a week," says Gail.
"I've always been very active, and I just want to feel good and live a good lifestyle for as long as possible."
Average miles per week
Number of marathons completed
Favorite running shoe
Strangest place you've ran...
Why do you run every day?