Josie Knapp

Age: 38
Hometown: Cozad, Nebraska living in Lafayette, Colorado
Activity: Runner / Aspiring Ultra-runner
Social Media: IG: @Jotothek
                STRAVA: Josie Knapp
1.Why did I first choose my sport?
If the 90’s taught me anything, it was to hate my body. I thought that running would be a great way to
make my body loveable. I didn’t realize at 15 what doors I was opening for my older self.

2. Why do I continue to play my sport?
Running centers me. There will always be someone that can run faster and further, but I really love running, so it doesn’t matter. Every time I lace up my shoes, I get excited about what the next hour (or four) will bring me. The thoughts, smells, sights—they are mine for that time. Mine and the run’s, it does not get better than that. Also, I will always be ready for the zombie apocalypse.

3. If I could achieve anything I wished for in my sport, what would it be?
To run the Costa Rica Costal Challenge

4. What are the physical things I do really well in my sport?
I am tuned in to my body. I know when to pull back and when I can push it.

5. What are the mental things I do really well in my sport?
When I trained for my first half marathon I adopted the mantra “This too shall pass”. I’d run it through my head anytime I wanted to quit. It’s been years since that mantra came into my life, and now I don’t have to think it, I just know it. I can mentally handle anything during a run because I know that it will pass.

6. How physically fit/strong do I need to be for my sport?
For my upcoming goal—pretty. True endurance is a beast that requires dedication, patience, and balance.

7. What skills and attributes do the best athletes have in my sport?
Persistence and patience

8. What do I need to do to make sure I’m physically prepared for my sport?
I need to run, a lot. I also need to listen to my body and know when it is tired. I need to sleep, drink water, and eat all of my colors.

9. How many hours of sleep do I need each night?
At least eight—Knapps take naps

10. How do I make sure I get a sound night’s sleep?
No socks, I can sleep anywhere at anytime if I don’t have socks on.

11. How do I know if my recovery is working?
I can sprint the end of my runs and feel the urge to just keep running.

12. What about sport brings me the most joy?
A good mountain trail on a fall day—the smell is amazing.

13. How important is achieving my sporting goals to me?
It’s very important, I wake up every day thinking about my run—how far, how fast, what to eat and drink during it, what is the weather, etc, etc. BUT with that being said, there MUST BE BALANCE. If my body is not cooperating, if something is hurting beyond the daily grind, if I’m too tired or dehydrated—I should not push. The ultimate goal is to be still doing this thirty years from now. If my goal of running 64 miles in February supersedes my body’s willingness to do it, then I compromise my longevity in this sport. Endurance running is about the long haul, not the sprint.

14. Where does confidence come from?

15. What am I going to change tomorrow to make me better than I was today?
Stretching, I WILL stretch tomorrow.

16. Any other info you want to share about yourself or your sport.
Back to the long end of the very first question. I started running because I thought that it would make me look like the models on the cover of 17 magazine (and all my skinny friends). I thought that I would be popular if I ran far enough for long enough. I counted calories and miles as if they could save me from myself. It’s been 22 years since I ran my first mile. In those 22 years I never did get the body those models had. My hips jiggle, stretch marks dominate my midsection, and turns out cellulite does not disappear at mile 13. I am ok with all of that. I love my body. My legs take me up hills, down trails, across the city streets, that is all I need. Running brings me back to myself each and every time. I enjoy those moments I have with myself.