Success Stories: Summer Hawkins
Department of Public Utilities
Water Protection Specialist
I was an athlete growing up playing soccer through high school and rugby in college. After graduation, I fell off the wagon and way out of shape. On Thanksgiving in 2000, my sister and I decided it was time to get back into shape and started running again. The first time out, we felt awful and only made it maybe half of a mile (walking some of it too), but kept it up until we were running 3 miles daily. To motivate myself, I set sight on the 2001 Columbus Marathon which I completed with the help of my mother and sister who each ran half with me. Since then, running and exercise in general has been a huge part of my life and invaluable to me. It’s a relaxation technique, attitude adjustment, time to think and reflect, and has become a large part of who I am. I don’t feel like myself if I skip more than a day or two.
I have managed to lose about 70 pounds in the past 8 years of consistent running, which of course feels great and I am now in the best shape of my life! I am also a cyclist and in the last few years have gotten into triathlons. Over the years, I have done a few half marathons and many other running, biking, and triathon events. In 2008, I ran a full marathon again and beat my previous time by about thirty minutes. In October 2010, I ran my third full marathon on a challenging course in Maine and finally reached my goal of a less than ten minute mile, finishing in 4:20:19! My next goal is to beat 4 hours and then I will set my sights on training for a half Ironman. I find that having events to train for is the only way for me to stick with the program so I try to always have another on the horizon to keep me motivated.