Sunday, November 25, 2012

Dirty Girl Profile: Meet Marcy Moran Crebs

I wish I could tell you I remember meeting Marcy for the first time. I don't. She's such an integral member of Dirty Girls that it just seems like she's always been there, as much a part of who we are as the woods we run through. Truth be told, Marcy is a lot like a tree: solid, sheltering, beautiful, and a little bit twisted in parts (this last bit said with much love!) Though she mostly runs with the kind-pace group, she's got a competitive gleam in her eye and a mean sprinter's kick! Dare we say... dark horse? Her "do or die" attitude sometimes gets her into trouble but she is learning how to "train smart!" In addition to being a Dirty Girl, she's a nurse, a mother to two young runners, a volunteer for Dock Street Running & Walking, a skilled outdoors-woman, and a savvy shopper who prides herself on striking gold at Good Will. I suspect there are many people out there who will tell you that Marcy helped them get through the most difficult time of their life. She is the embodiment of a good friend. She has a great laugh. 

Tell us five things we don't know about you:
1) I swam synchronized swimming throughout grade school. It might look kind of funny, but it was tough! 
2) I initially went to Virginia Tech majoring in Music Ed/Vocal Performance. I LOVED being in the Marching Band!
3) I received my nursing education in the Army. One of my books had instructions on how to do an emergency tracheotomy with a ballpoint pen! 
4) I was recruited to run for the Army, but I didn't know if I would like running as my job, and if I got hurt I could be medically discharged and wouldn't be able to finish nursing school. So I ran for Ft. Lewis instead while in school. 
5) My hubby and I eloped. We were engaged, and planning the big shindig, but we just weren't enjoying it. We’re still happy with our decision 12 years later.

Tell us about your running evolution:
I started as a sprinter in middle school and also in high school. 100 and 300 meter hurdles were my main events, and I remember our weekly 3 mile long run was a big downer. The only thing I liked about it was running past my house, and having my puppy greet us. When I was in the Army I decided that I liked some of the longer stuff. I really enjoyed the camaraderie of running with others, and showing the boys that I could hang or show them up instead. l LOVED being the company flag bearer (aka a guidon) during big group runs. You run in formation with guidons in the front, and to get folks pumped up you take speedy laps around the formation, while everyone's yelling and hollering. It feels like you're flying when heading against traffic, but it’s a bit slower getting back to the front! Occasionally I ran trails, but it didn't become my preference until 5 or 6 years ago. My motivation now really waxes and wanes, seemingly related to injuries. Dirty Girls and planned group runs really help me with this. My training has taken a big downturn in intensity since having kiddos. I've also had to really work on dialing back my competitiveness - I haven't put in the training in recent years to try to run at the levels I did previously. I've had it with being injured!

What do you remember about running with Dirty Girls for the first time? 
My first Dirty Girls run ended up being Dec 24th, 2010. I loved the trails and the group of gals, and it was my first run back since my auto accident. The only other groups I'd been in were running teams – which have a different purpose altogether. My teammates were nice, we got along, but they were also my competition. Dirty Girls brings women together to support each other with running/walking, but also to support each other with all of life's journeys. There's just something a little extra in conversations on the trails. 

Both your children, ages 8 & 10 are runners. How do you balance keeping running fun for them while at the same time helping them to achieve their goals?
It's tough, and I try to be aware of this balance. Caitlin seems to be more competitive in training and racing, and Cammie just enjoys the run, whatever the pace. I hope running brings to them what it does to me - stress relief, fun with friends, and a sense of accomplishment. I love the "talk time" on the trails with my kids. Both of them, especially Cameron, will talk about things on a run that I would never get him to open up about anywhere else. Like we all do, they love the acceptance and nurturing of this running community. Thanks to Jorge and Skippy, many times now I’ve heard Cammie say, "Real men wear Pink!

Real Men Wear Pink!
What life experiences have most shaped your values, your mindset, and how you live your life now?
Probably the single largest decision I made was choosing to move cross-country by myself. I had been stationed at Fort Lewis previously, but moved back to Ohio where I grew up. I missed the Pacific Northwest. The experiences I've had here, the people I’ve met, and the many lifestyles I've been exposed to have given me an opportunity for a life that probably would not have been a possibility in a smaller Midwestern town.

You're a hospice nurse, a job that can no doubt be emotionally draining. Does being around death so regularly give you a different perspective on life? 
I have realized that it is an amazing gift to be with patients and families during the end of life. The dying folks around me have taught me to make life worthwhile and enjoy as much of it as possible. Some folks live fully, some don't. I'd rather be in the first category. I've found that I need to have a really good cry every month or so, or it builds up. I do cry with families, but at the same time I can't be a sobbing wreck. Scott, my husband is really good about listening to me when I get home, even if it's the middle of the night. Running helps!
Tell us the cougar den story:
My friend Val and I were on a trail that followed a creek, and we saw tracks. We stopped to look, and took note to look them up later. The trail started to get a bit dicey, and then we stepped up onto a log that was impeding the trail. When we glanced down we saw a big critter den in the hollow of a fallen tree, complete with a fresh, bloody treat. Long story short--a cougar was trapped near this den, and then was transported and released in the Olympics. 

Do you have a personal code that you live by?
"Your life is an occasion. Rise to it." - Mr. Magorium