Staying Competitive

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By Greg Royce, Director of Athletics Communications

Terry (McDonough) Prouty ’88 was a competitive two-sport athlete while at SNHU. Now the Penmen women’s soccer coach, she has found a new outlet for her drive.

A standout student-athlete, Prouty is known as one of the fiercest competitors ever to don a Penmen uniform. In softball, she graduated as SNHU’s career leader in strikeouts and earned run average and still ranks second in ERA. She led the program to a pair of ECAC Tournament appearances. In soccer, she was a four-time All-New England selection and led the Penmen to 68 wins and a pair of ECAC titles. Prouty was inducted into the SNHU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1997.

Now the coach and senior woman administrator for the athletic department, Prouty has turned her competitive spirit to another endeavor: marathon running.

Always an avid fitness buff, Prouty caught the marathon bug in 2007. Her husband, former Associate Director of Athletics Ray Prouty, received a letter about running an upcoming marathon for charity with Team in Training, which participates in marathons to raise money for leukemia and lymphoma research. He handed it over to his wife, and the rest is history.

“I’ve always ran, but I thought it would be neat to give back and run for a reason,” Terry Prouty said. “I went to the first meeting, and it blew me away. To run for a cause, it just made sense. My first marathon was with Team in Training at Disney, and I loved it.”

After her first experience, she was hooked. She has since completed a total of eight marathons.  

In April, she completed her third Boston Marathon, finishing in a time of 3:33:32. She has also competed in the New York City, Clarence DeMar (Keene, N.H.) and BayState (Lowell, Mass.) marathons, and twice ran the Disney Marathon.

“Once you run a marathon, it’s something that you either love it, or you hate it, and I loved it and wanted to keep doing it,” she said.

In 2009, her second trip to Disney, Terry Prouty completed what is known as the “Goofy,” a half marathon (13 miles) on Saturday followed by a full 26-mile marathon Sunday.

“The Goofy was nuts, but it was a challenge, and I like a challenge,” she said.
As if the Goofy wasn’t grueling enough. Terry Prouty has a new challenge in store for June, as she will compete in her first half-triathlon, the Ironman Mooseman in Newfound Lake, N.H. The event consists of a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile bike ride and a half marathon.

Since starting, Terry Prouty’s marathon times have steadily improved. In her first Boston Marathon in 2009, she ran a time of 3:45:08. One year later, she gained nearly 15 minutes, posting a time of 3:29:39. She also gained over 20 minutes between her first two trips to the Disney marathon. Prouty attributes that to her competitive nature as well as her training regimen, which consists of several shorter runs during the week and a longer, 20- to 23-mile run on Saturdays, usually with several of her Team in Training teammates.

“To train for a marathon, you start 16 weeks in advance,” she said. “It’s pretty intense, but it depends on what you want. If you’re looking to finish, then your numbers will still be high, but not as high. If you’re looking to compete, your numbers as far as how many miles you’ll put in per week will be higher. Myself, I’m competitive, so I’ll put in a lot of miles.

“However, it’s important to remember that even if you train and follow your program to the T, there are no guarantees on race day. You might feel good and you might not, and you only have that one chance. Still, all the training is worth it, because I feel like you’re giving your all to something you love and have a passion for.”

 

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