Inside the Mind of an Olympic Marathon Hopeful

POSTED BY : Nate Helming


 

Ever wondered what it’s like to view the world from the eyes of one of the BEST female distance runners around?

 

Enter Devon Yanko. Now Devon has a cool story.

 

No seriously…listen up.

 

Devon is tall. Like really tall. While standing head and shoulders over the competition metaphorically is a good thing, it can be another story on the marathon course.

 

After all, when it comes to efficiently carrying your body long distances, like 26.2 miles and BEYOND long distances, the smaller and compact you are the better right?

 

Well if that’s the case apparently this professional runner and Olympic hopeful hasn’t heard. 

 

Two potential areas of weakness for a distance runner, size and experience (she did not run competitively in school like so many of her competitors), she views as feathers in her kick-ass running cap.

 

In fact, getting into running a little late in the game has given her her most valuable assets: patience and perspective:

 

“I love running. I let myself get burned out in college playing basketball and working towards my scholarship. Running is just for me and I plan on keeping it that way.”

 

And while she feels a little out of sorts at times, towering over her five foot nothing, 100 pound competition, say at the NYC marathon starting line, she smiles and lets her running do the talking.

 

And let me tell you, with a scorching 2:38 olympic-trials qualifying marathon time, and multiple USA Track & Field National Championships to her name, her running speaks loud and clear.

 

So…what’s her secret? 

 

Well, we get into that in this exclusive interview the day before her racing, and placing 2nd overall, in this past weekend’s San Francisco Marathon.

 

In this interview we also discuss her weekly training routine, marathon pacing strategies, recent injury and her approach towards Olympic Trials qualification.

 

In short, I find Devon so inspiring because she is so relatable with the rest of us mere running mortals.

 

Her popular cafe/bakery, MH Bread & Butter, keeps her busy, happy, and (at times) stressed as a small business owner.

 

I can relate to that!
Things haven’t always gone her way. She’s dealt with injuries and learned how to move past them.

 

Again, check mark!

 

In both her business and in her running, Devon relates:

 

“There’s going to be good patches, and bad patches, and things will suck for a while. But you have to have faith that things will get better. And you learn that with running.”

 

She’s a late bloomer in the running scene, not getting into the competitive world until after she could legally buy a beer, a full 10 years behind many of her world-class competitors.

 

How many of us have discovered running later in life and want to keep it as part of our lifestyle for years to come?

 

And she does WAY MORE than just run. But again really we’re just scratching the surface of this intrepid and entrepreneurial distance runner.

 

So listen in on our conversation, and tease out a few more nuggets that keep her happily and safely adding to her 60+ and counting marathon & ultra race resume, her attempting yet another Olympic Trials bid, her managing her growing business, all the while setting aside time aside for her friends and family.

 

Learn more about Devon Yanko by following her on Twitter: @fastfoodiecooks, Instgram: @fastfoodie, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dcrosbyhelms and her website: http://www.devonyanko.com/

 

And yes that’s me working for USL.TV! I’ll be doing more race commentating and interviews with them in the months to come….