Monica Huff wanted to run her 100th marathon near home.
Originally from Clemson, Huff, who began running marathons in 1999, was at No. 99 and thought it would be a great idea to organize a Mother’s Day marathon in Athens to celebrate her achievement. But with a husband, three children and a demanding job, Huff decided to take another approach.
“Trying to organize a marathon became more like work, so I decided to make the Mother’s Day run a celebration, and in order to have a celebration, I had to go ahead and run the 100th marathon,” she told the Athens Banner-Herald. “So I looked online and the closest one I could sneak in before Mother’s Day was the Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati.”
With her in Queen City on May 5 was her 18-year-old daughter, Gabby Huff-Streiter, who will run at Oglethorpe University in the fall. She completed her 100th marathon in 3 hours and 37 minutes.
“It was kind of surreal,” she said.
What was originally going to be an Athens-based marathon turned into a Mother’s Day fun run, which took place at 7:30 a.m. on Milledge Avenue.
Huff, 48, ran her first marathon while working on her dissertation and didn’t run another one until 2003, after which she set a goal to run 50 marathons in 50 different states before she turned 50 years old.
She completed No. 50 in Las Vegas on December 2011 and then set her sights on 100. Huff is a member of the 50Sub4 Club, recognizing runners who have completed 50 marathons in all 50 states in less than four hours.
Huff now has a new goal, which is to become a member in the 100Sub4 Club by running 14 more marathons to qualify.
“I’m obviously not done with marathons – there’s always another goal,” she said. “I have to do 14 more for 100 certified Sub4. I have one state left. You just modify your goals.”
Huff is planning to run the Jack & Jill’s Downhill Marathon in July in North Bend, Washington, and will run in the Jackson Hole Marathon in Wyoming on Labor Day.
“I’ve been thinking about running all the ones in Georgia, and I’m looking for one in Georgia in the fall,” she said.
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