You would never know that Molly Nunn just finished her first marathon. The former Wake Forest track and cross country runner was just 59 seconds shy of qualifying for the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials when she crossed the finish line at the Myrtle Beach Marathon on Feb. 19.
Nunn finished 5th overall with at time of 2:46:59.
“I felt almost every emotion in the book. The last mile, I felt complete joy, awe, pain, determination, happiness all at once,” she said. “Crossing the line, I was overwhelmed with such gratitude, and was also humbled by the experience.”
Nunn credits the support, prayers and cheers from friends and family, and the belief in her dream for carrying her through the 26.2 miles.
When she finished her first marathon, all she wanted to eat were “Krispy Kreme Doughnuts–chocolate iced ones with sprinkles.”
Don’t count Molly Nunn out of the Olympic Trials just yet. She has been working towards the Olympic Trials for four years. Prior to the Myrtle Beach Marathon, the farthest she had raced was 15.5 miles at the 2010 25k Championships in Grand Rapids, Mich. In training, she has gone up to 24 miles at a time.
Nunn considers her four to eight mile runs the “easy days” of training. On workout days, she will run between eight and 13 miles in the afternoons. The distance grows to 24 miles and shortens the closer she gets to race day. She works with David Duggan, former assistant coach with the Wake Forest cross country and track and field teams.
“David is researching races around the country and we will shoot for another marathon five or six months from now, most likely.”
So what inspires Nunn to pursue her Olympic dream? For starters, she believes life is about the journey. Running, by definition, is a journey. “I have experienced so many incredible mornings, afternoons and evenings. I have met incredible runners and learned from them. It is my time to relax, think and enjoy life.”
Relaxation is not something that comes easy. Nunn works full-time within the investment group at Allegacy Federal Credit Union and is working towards her Master in Business Administration degree in the evening Working Professionals program at Wake Forest University. Still, she finds a way to balance it all. “I have learned to simply stay focused on the goals and dreams, work hard, and do the very best job I can.”
Nunn says she knows her Olympic goal is a big one and shares her personal mantra, a quote from Robert Browning: “Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp–or what’s heaven for?”