Denisa Costescu from Romania
Denisa has been a fixture on the road running scene in Michigan for several years now after moving here from way of Romania. If you don't know who she is, she is the one winning most of all the races she enters. This year was the only recent time that Denisa seemed vulnerable. If you are thinking that she was not running as well this year because she was getting lazy and not training as much, you would be partly right. Read on to find out what has been going on with Denisa and to see what her future plans with running involve.
RM: Denisa, you have had quite the summer with regards to racing. For those on the outside of the loop, Denisa had a child prior to all of her successful racing. First off, congratulations on having a child. When was your child born and if you wouldn't mind, what is your child's name?
DC: Thank you! We are so very happy. We have a wonderful baby. Her name is Alisia-Sara. She is 6 month old now and she is so beautiful! Being pregnant last winter was one of the most fun times of my whole life. I couldn't wait to meet my daughter. I was so excited!
RM: How was your training leading up to having your child? When did you start to back off on your training and did you try any other forms of staying in shape other than running to maintain your fitness?
DC: I ran every day during my pregnancy. Even the day Alisia was born I ran 4 miles in that morning. I was lucky that I had a very easy pregnancy.
RM: When did you resume training after having your child and how much did you start out with and how much did you increase volume and intensity each week?
DC: I start running again 10 days later after Alisia was born. It wasn't easy to get back in shape again.
RM: You raced on several occasions this summer. Two races of note were the Milford 10k where you placed 2nd and the Crim 10 miler where you placed as the 2nd Michigan runner? What are your thoughts on those races and the others you ran? Did you run better than you thought you would have considering the circumstances?
DC: I started racing again 2 month after Alisia was born and I ran a 5K 17:20, which is not bad for my first race. The Crim 10 miler is not one of my favorite courses or distances and the road race in Milford 10K was pretty hilly so I am not very happy with my performance at those 2 races . I ran good in Detroit Zoo 5K -16:57 and 3 weeks ago I won the race in Ohio Oktoberfest 10K in Minster, running 34:51 .I feel that I am stronger and stronger now and I really hope that my next season will be very successful.
RM: Do you plan to keep on racing several times over the summer and year or are you probably going to scale back some due to being a parent? If you are planning on any upcoming races, what are they and how serious do you see yourself preparing for them?
DC: I am planning to run some major races next season and my goal is to compete in the Olympic Games for my country, Romania. I have to run 14 seconds faster that my PB on 5000m. My PB is 15:33. My mom was here all this summer helping us with the baby. Our schedule was very busy working at the New Balance store and coaching at Marian high school. I am the assistant coach there and my husband is the head coach in cross country and track and field.
Thanks for the great interview Denisa! (Interview conducted by Nick Cordes)