Hosted By: The City of Mesa
SATURDAY FEB 8, 2020

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Growing up in Turkey, Gulsum never had the opportunity to pursue running as a sport; she always watched running movies and was inspired by the athletes. After living in the United States for over 20 years, she was introduced to running on Thanksgiving Day in 2011. She ran her first 10K with no training, or even an understanding of the term “training”, before entering the race! That first 10K is where Gulsum developed a passion for running, and realized she had found her calling. She went on to run several more 10Ks and half marathons, but never committed to a training schedule until she finished her first marathon in 6 hours and 9 minutes, and promised never to run a marathon again. After her first marathon, she heard about the World Marathon Majors, and had a dream to run all 6 major world marathons. Gulsum proudly became the first Turkish woman marathoner completing all Abbott World Major Marathons in October 2018. As a believer of “DREAM BIG”, she decided to chase her Boston Qualifier goal. After her first 6:09 marathon, she ran a Sub-4 marathon on her 10th marathon in the Mesa-Phoenix Marathon, moving closer to her Boston Qualifier goal. Gulsum has already started her 2020 Mesa-Phoenix Marathon training, and has a goal of 3:47 to qualify for the Boston Marathon at the age of 46. Gulsum, who runs a small environmental consulting firm in San Diego, is a mother to a daughter who runs track, a son who plays basketball, and is married to her college friend from SDSU.

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