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From the Mat to the Marathon: Jessica Fresh’s Journey to the Boston Marathon

When Jessica Fresh set her mind to something, she went all out — all 26 miles.

The Justin Northwest head wrestling coach — boys and girls — took part in the 128th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15.

While her students and wrestlers were in class, she was traversing the roads of Boston.

It took her less than 4 hours to travel the 26 miles and 385 yards on the course — crossing at 3:52.55.

“The thing that attracted me to the marathon was the mental toughness and mentality aspect,” she said. “I have always been drawn to things that require you to dig deep. I used to think running was for those who were kind of weak, but then as I got into it, I realized how strong you have to be to run some of these events. My background with wrestling really gives me an upper hand when it comes to tough physical challenges; I know my body can handle whatever I can make my mind believe.”

A wrestler in college — at Waldforf University in Forest City, Iowa — she learned the grueling aspects of the sport, but also the mental side. 

She says she’s a ‘learn as I go human’ and learned a tough lesson training for this marathon. She battled through plantar fasciitis, which made workouts a little more painful.

But, she persevered — leading up to and during.

She finished the first half of the marathon in 1 hour, 44 minutes. 

“During the race, I was able to find a good groove for the first half, then struggled a bit the second half,” she said….

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Written by Cody Thorn

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