For Kimi Reed, it all started in 8th grade gym class in her home town of Rolla, Missouri, when she ran a mile run for the first time. “I finished first out of everyone, and from then on I have progressed all the way to the marathon!” Progressed is putting it mildly, as Kimi has excelled at each level of racing while participating in longer and longer events over the past ten years since that first mile run.
“I like all race distances, but if I had to pick one, I’d say right now my favorite distance is the half marathon. I started running longer races competitively in 2011, so it’s still fairly new and exciting to me. I was patient the first year, and now feel like I’m really adapting to the longer distances and can be more competitive.”
Kimi has been more than just competitive during her running career, qualifying for the state high school cross country meet all four years in high school and finishing fourth her senior year, and earning eight NCAA All American honors in cross country (fourth nationally her junior year) and track and field (runner up in the 10K her junior year) in college at Missouri State University. “I made a big improvement between my freshman and sophomore years at Missouri State, and going under 17 minutes in the 5K and under 35 minutes in the 10K were my highlights,” she shared. “If you would have asked me during my freshman year if I’d ever run under a 17 minute 5k, I would have laughed at them.”
Since coming to Kansas City to get a physical therapy degree at Rockhurst University, she has also been more than competitive in the local racing scene, finishing as the 2nd place overall female in the Waddell and Reed 5K in 2011 (17:15), first place overall female in the St. Patrick’s Day four mile run (23:06) and third place overall female (and top local female) in this year’s Hospital Hill Half Marathon (1:17:18).
“Hospital Hill was a 2 minute PR for me! I expected to run sub 1:18, but didn’t think it would happen this year. I’m still shocked I ran that fast on that course. The biggest factor to my performance was the competition. Another factor that made this race so special to me was that my Mom, Dad, and Coach Jamie from MSSU made the trip to come watch me run. This race was kind of a big deal to me and, after having a big race there this year, it’s moved to the top of my list of favorite area races!”
Kimi’s plans are to continue to run in local 5K’s this summer, including the Rock the Crossroads 5K on July 28, and then possibly the St.Louis Rock-n-Roll Half or the Prairie Fire half in October. Her plan is to step up the 50-60 miles a week she was putting in leading up to the Hospital Hill Half Marathon to between 70-80 miles per week this summer, her highest ever weekly training mileage. That training, together with her previous success and being just 24 years old, makes Kimi a favorite in just about any race she enters.