Meet the Team – Lauren Stansell
In your most recent current update, you talked about completing the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in DC and looking forward to running the Fit Foodie 5k. Have you always been interested in running or is running a new hobby of yours?
- Growing up, I ran, but in the form of playing team sports like soccer and basketball. I started running as more of a hobby in college; I loved running through the gorgeous Virginia Tech campus. The first real race I ran was the 3.2 Run in Remembrance, held every year at Virginia Tech. My interest in half marathons and other races (including 5ks and obstacle races) spiked after graduation. I’ve really enjoyed seeking out and running in these races – I love having an upcoming race as a goal to work towards.
What do you find to be the most rewarding aspect of running?
- Do I have to pick just one?! The health benefits are obviously one of the most rewarding aspects of running. In addition to the physical health benefits, running also provides me with a lot of mental health benefits. For me, running is a good way to meditate and clear my mind. Regardless of my mood or desire to go on a run that day, I always feel much better afterwards. Also, I enjoy having a hobby like running in common with friends and people I meet. It’s nice to have a friend to train with, to be able to hold one another accountable, and to celebrate finishing races together.
What motivates you to run long distance events?
- That’s easy! First and foremost, the feeling of accomplishment upon crossing the finish line of a race is something that motivates me to keep signing up for and running races of all kinds. I also love the race atmosphere: there’s just something about the excitement, the adrenaline, and the encouragement from both the participants and the crowd that is incredibly motivating for me.
Are you training for any upcoming marathons?
- For the record, I don’t think I will EVER run a full marathon! Every time I cross the finish line of a half marathon I wonder how marathoners turn around and run it all over again! However, I have signed up to run the Baltimore Half Marathon in October. I have not begun training yet but have started looking into 12-week training schedules to begin in the coming weeks. I’ve been periodically running when I have the time but most of my time is taken up by studying for the upcoming CFP® exam. Once the exam is done, I will focus on training for the half marathon.
What is the CFP® Exam and how have you been preparing for it?
- The CFP® Exam is one of three steps required to earn the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM designation (in addition to the education requirement and the two year apprenticeship requirement). It is a 10 hour exam taken over two days. Personally, I have been using the Ken Zahn (Zahn, Inc.) study program which focuses on three to four months of pre-study materials, a four-day in-person live review course (which I attended two weekends ago), and post study materials given at the live review course.
That sounds like a lot of work! What inspires you to pursue becoming a Certified Financial Planner?
- Not only is taking the exam part of my career path with Yeske Buie and the next logical step to becoming a CFP®, I think it’s also the best way to dive into this profession head first. I acknowledge that I will always have more to learn about the financial planning profession (and that’s the beauty of it- it never gets boring), but the knowledge I’ve gained in my first year with Yeske Buie and through studying for the exam helps me to continue to grow in my role as an Associate Financial Planner. Every tidbit of information I’ve learned helps me to better serve our clients.
After months of dedicated studying, you deserve to celebrate your hard work! Do you have any plans to reward yourself?
- Yes! Immediately after the exam I will be flying to Milwaukee to visit family that I haven’t spent time with in quite a while. We will be spending the majority of our long weekend at a nearby lake relaxing. I also have plans to attend the Darius Rucker concert the weekend after the exam. And of course, I will be going for a run; time to get the half marathon training started!