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Due to COVID-19, many springtime races were canceled or postponed – a devastating blow to the motivation of runners across the world. This year’s Boston Marathon, slated to take place on April 20th, was no exception. The legendary marathon is now scheduled for Monday, September 14th. In an effort to keep motivation high, we have published the final three athlete spotlights, featuring race team members Janet Bensley, Tina Slagel, and Kevin Fitzgerald.
Janet Bensley is the self-proclaimed “senior” of the group of Maggots, having qualified for the Boston Marathon (her first) by running the 2018 Kiawah Island Marathon in 3:41 at the age of 65.  Janet was a competitive gymnast through high school and college and then took up running for a brief couple of years, running her first marathon in 1980 at age 27.  Following that, she only ran occasionally, as it fit into her career/schedule.  Janet moved to the Asheville area in 2011 and started running regularly and seriously at that time and continues to train and race.

How many marathons? Janet has run 2 marathons, the first in 1980 (Russian River Marathon, CA) and her second in 2018 (Kiawah Island Marathon), 38 years later.

Janet’s best marathon training tip? “I only know what works for me and that appears to be consistent speed workouts, lactate threshold-tempo workouts, and long runs, all done weekly.”

Janet’s favorite shoe and why? “I especially like Hokas, in particular Clifton and Challenger ATR. I’m planning on wearing HOKA Carbon X at Boston. I also like Brooks Glycerin for their comfort and longevity.”

Janet’s pre marathon/race day routine? “Lots of carbohydrates and fluids and lower protein for a few days before. Other than that, relax and get a good night’s sleep.”

What are you most looking forward to if this is your first Boston Marathon? “All the euphoria of such a large group of runners and I’m really looking forward to all the spectators cheering us along.  Finishing and seeing my husband at the finish line will be priceless.”


Stay tuned over the next few months as we continue our series featuring Jus’ Running Race Team’s Boston Marathon runners! Thanks to Kevin Fitzgerald (also a Jus’ Running Race Team member!) for his help in compiling this post.