By Chanel Parks
olympic runner kara goucherRunner Kara Goucher won the bronze medal at the 2007 World Championships in Athletics and is now weeks away from competing in the 2012 London Olympic Games. Living an active lifestyle has always been her M.O.-but now she shares her time with her husband, retired cross-country and track-and-field star Adam Goucher, and their 21-month-old son, Colton (aka Colt). As a Nissan Innovation for Endurance Athlete, Kara influences others to get fit and reach new goals for themselves. Taking the lessons she learned from her mother, Kara shared with WomansDay.com how she strives to inspire her son.
How do you keep Colton healthy?
Colt eats when we eat and usually eats the same things we do, with exceptions like sushi and spicy food. In general, he sees us eat healthily, so it's become part of his routine. He prefers to snack on fruit, and it's more of a special treat for him to get gummy fruit snacks or cookies. We lucked out because Colton is an active child anyway-he prefers playing basketball or pulling his wagon outside to sitting around the house. We go on a walk every day before dinner, which he enjoys as well.
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How did your mom motivate you as an athlete?
My mom was always supportive and made me believe anything was possible. She still does! She's a really strong person. Through the ups and downs, she never let me set limits on myself. When I told her that I wanted to be in the Olympics when I was younger, she didn't laugh at me; she encouraged me to do it.
What words of wisdom did your mom like to share with you?
When I had a bad race, she'd say, "Take a day and be sad," which I find to be a good outlook on life. You deal with something, but realize you have to move on.
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How did your mom boost you up when you were feeling down?
My father was killed by a drunk driver right before I turned four, but she never let me feel sorry for myself or her. She reminded me of all the positive things and how great my life was compared to other people's. She's a glass half-full person, which always helped.
How do you keep Colt feeling good about himself?
When I'm with him, we have quality time-I'm not texting or on Twitter because it's just him and me. We are engaging with each other. I train two times a day, sometimes three, so when we spend time together, he knows that he's important. I have to make sure that I'm there for him to keep him well and motivated.
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Do you want Colt to play sports?
I dedicated my life to running, and it's paid off a lot, so I want him to feel passionate toward something, whether it's marching band, an academic subject or sports. I want him to be disciplined, so that he understands responsibility and sets goals for himself.
Can you tell us about your role as a Nissan Innovation for Endurance Athlete?
The daily interaction and tips on the Facebook page are great, and it's fun to partner with a company that gets people to move more and strive athletically.
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Don't forget to cheer Kara on at the 2012 London Olympic Summer Games, starting July 27 th !
Original article appeared on WomansDay.com.
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