All About Megan Saloom

2016 Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier- 2:43

Loves to run: Marathons


How did you start running?

During Jr. High, I joined the cross-country team so I would not have to do PE in the PE uniforms. 

The first day of practice in Jr. High we did a timed mile.  I threw-up and walked a part of the time.  My parents were like, “Oh this isn't going to last!” By the end of the season, I was pretty good at it!

I went on to run DI Cross-Country at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas.  


What is your favorite part about Texas?

I grew up in Houston about three hours away from my college, Stephen F. Austin State University.

My favorite thing about living in TEXAS is we have a lot of PRIDE in our state and everything is BIG!  


What is running like in Texas?

Running in heat makes it hard to train in the summers.  I have to run really early in the morning or late at night. 

Over the summer I went to Boulder for a few week to escape the humidity!  


When did you start running marathons?

I started running marathons after college. I moved to the Woodlands north of Houston, for training.

My half-marathon time was 1:18.  I just needed to shave off a few minutes for an Olympic Trials Qualifying Standard.  I spent a year trying to run 1:15.  Then, I decided to say a Hail Mary and go for a qualifying time in the full Houston Marathon.  My overall finishing time was 2:43.  I qualified for Olympic Trials!


WHat was it like running in the Olympic Trials Marathon?

On February 13th  I ran in the Olympic Trials. 

The atmosphere and crowds were amazing and was an experience unlike any other.  When I passed the half-way point was when I really started feeling the effects of running a marathon a little less than a month before.  A few miles further I passed my husband and told him, “This is not fun anymore.” I knew at that point my body was almost finished. It was a very hot day for racing.  

When planning my drop out point I met Emily Gordon, another competitor who was contemplating dropping as well.  We started an easy jog and tried to encourage each other for a few minutes.  Then, we were on the struggle bus again and ended up walking with, Chris Barnicle, one of the male competitors for a few miles. It was such a crazy race experience!  


I ended up dropping out at mile 20 but was still ecstatic to be there none the less! 


Making it to the Olympic Trials Marathon is such an amazing accomplishment. You are truly an inspiration.  What were your favorite moments from the overall experience?

I have a few!

When my flight arrived in Los Angeles, my parents picked me up.  As we were driving to the hotel, it took a moment to soak in we were driving to the Olympic Trials.  It has not just been my dream, my parents have been my biggest supporters through everything.  They were up at night researching races to run and always cheering me on.  We made it to the Olympic Trials and it felt so inspiring.

My husband won the LA 5K the morning of my Olympic Trials!

The atmosphere was amazing, starting the race and running through the streets of Los Angeles with people cheering for you.  Cheering not because they want you to go fast or to win, but because you made it here to the Olympic Trials. I was running with a smile on my face for miles!


Where are your favorite places to run?

In Houston we have Memorial Park.  I love the Huntsville State Park, running through the forest!


What is a typical week of training for you?

  • Long run on Sunday.
  • Workout of Tuesday and Friday.
  • The rest of the week I have a single run and two days of double running.


How much mileage do you run in a week?

Anywhere from a low of 60 miles a week, to maybe 70-80, and during marathon training 90-100!


What is your favorite Gue Energy flavor?



What are your favorite foods?

Zydeco bars, they are based out of Louisiana where my husband is from!  We found them and they are a really good recovery snack.  My favorite flavor is the brownie bar!

I love Mexican food!


What do you love to wear running?

Sports-bra, and running-shorts with a hat! I love compression-socks.   


If you could run a destination marathon, what would you choose?

The Berlin Marathon would be fun.  I would love to run a race somewhere in Europe where culture is different and compare it to races here in the US!

Eventually, I would love to run the Boston Marathon.


What are your running plans for this year?

This year, I plan to run the Houston Marathon. 

The weather is perfect, people are around me the entire time.  Last year in the Houston Marathon, it was the last day to qualify for the Olympic Trials and there were so many women running with the 2:45 pacer!  


Do you have a Favorite quote?

I have always have loved this quote,“Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.” I feel like it really describes my running journey from the beginning.


Do you have advice for other runners?

My advice is to keep going and keep training, because that is what running takes.  It takes time, years and years of training to put the miles under you.  That is how you see improvement, over years and years of time.

My friend and I were just talking about how when you are younger, you want to be running these fast times.  Then, later on you look back over years and think, “WOW!” 

Running is something you have to be very patient with.  


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Photography, courtesy of Megan Saloom.
That Pretty Runner