The Mother’s Day Kanab 10K is coming up next weekend, and last year’s top overall female finisher, Jill Williams (36), will be one of the 200 runners standing at the starting line. If she runs this 10K like last year, she will be one of the first runners to make her way down the canyon, into town and across the finish line. You’ll be able to pick her out, sporting her trademark hot pink compression socks that are almost as bright as her smile.

Williams is a “wicked fast runnah” as some say in Boston, where she recently finished the Boston Marathon with a time of 3:39:07. Her finishing time qualifies her for next year’s marathon. Re-qualifying for Boston in Boston is a big deal and great accomplishment. In fact, Williams says it is her greatest running achievement.

After the tragic events occurring at this year’s Boston Marathon, Williams wasn’t sure she’d ever want to go back. She has since reconsidered and become inspired by victims who lost limbs, but are nonetheless moving forward in their lives more vigorously than ever. The Boston bombing was a horrible situation for Williams and her husband Steve to go through.

“It was a huge tragedy and my thoughts are with all the families. It sounds cliché,” she says, “but I saw the worst of humanity and the best of humanity in the same place.”

Williams hasn’t always been an outstanding runner, and didn’t start until after graduating high school. “I was so un-athletic, it wasn’t even funny,” she says.

Since beginning, she has run six marathons and numerous other races, but the Kanab 10K is her favorite of all. “It’s right before Mother’s Day and being a mom is the most important aspect of my life,” she said.

Williams is the mother of two boys, Harry (5) and JJ (3). Jill and Steve have lived in Kanab and worked at Best Friends Animal Society for the past eight years.

Williams says she has met some of her best friends from running in Kanab. She explains Kanab is the perfect place to run, as all the trails and scenic beauty are easy motivators to get out. “It’s so pretty here, and it just makes you feel so invigorated!”

Don’t just take Williams’ word for it – sign up for the Kanab 10K today and see for yourself!