Gina Merchant

Hometown: Topanga, CA

Background: Soccer, ballet and track.  Quit ballet at 14 because I liked hitting people more than dancing on my toes.  Played soccer for Cuesta Junior College and the University of Connecticut. Played for the D1 national title with UConn in 2003.  Also ran one year of track at UCSD (4X400 and 800). 

I've been racing competitively since...  2005 (But I’m really not all that competitive).


  • 800 – 2:15 (over & over again, 2005)

  • 1500 – 4:47 (PLNU, 2013)

  • 5K (road) – 18:04 (Carlsbad 5K, 2014)

  • Half-marathon – 1:25 (Carlsbad Half, 2010 & 2013)

Favorite races: Encinitas Mile (Encinitas, CA), Balboa XC 4-miler (San Diego, CA)

Favorite workout: 3X marble pickup (big bucket)… 200 repeats, hill repeats, anything with lactic acid

Words to live by: 

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams (Eleanor Roosevelt)

 What lies behind us and what lies before us are are small matters compared to what lies within us (Emerson).  

Be mentally prepared for setbacks.

Why you choose to run for PRT: As a post-collegiate athlete I found myself missing my teammates.  With PRT I get to train and race with not only excellent runners but excellent people and it reminds me of what life is all about.  I like being a part of something bigger than myself.

What I like to do besides running: long breakfasts with D, The Fuzz and the Sunday paper.  Gardening, cooking, wine with friends and camping.