Hello Salty Readers! I’m so excited to join this team of fabulous Salty women. I chose the name Allspice because it so accurately expresses my fitness philosophy. Being fit is truly the spice of life, and while running is my absolute favorite way to stay fit, I believe all activities that ignite your passion have a place in your workout arsenal! I hope the information I share through my posts will help improve your running, and my love of cross training will show you options that will help you become a more well- rounded athlete.
My first race happened when I was 35, and only because I was in the right (or wrong, depending on your perspective) place at the right time. I was a fitness instructor at a local gym that sponsored an annual 5k. The morning of the race I had just finished teaching a fitness class when the manager announced that someone from each department needed to run the race. I was drafted to represent the aerobic department because I had long legs and was wearing the appropriate shoes–though years later I learned that step aerobics shoes were in no way appropriate! Having no idea how far 5k was, I toed the line and started running like a crazy woman when I heard “go,” and kept running until I crossed what I hoped was the finish line. It was so much harder than teaching step aerobics, and I vowed I would never do it again, until I learned I was the first woman to finish.
I’ve been hooked ever since! I’ve run two marathons, about 15 halves, and too many 5 and 10k’s to count. Most of my age group wins or placings have been in the shorter distances. There’s nothing like a 5 or 10k to bring out the competitive crazy in me, and I’ve yet to figure out how to run the shorter races just for “fun.”
As I get older, PR’s get harder to achieve. In my 30s I could race a 5k in 21:00, but in my 50s I call a 23:30 a great time. Someday I hope to be able to let something other than my finish time define my success in a race, but for now it’s a work in progress.
My 15 minutes of running fame came in March of 2012 when I was featured in a Runner’s World article titled Forever Young. It was about training and racing as a Masters runner; how it’s changed, and my “secrets” for continuing to run well as I age. Other than everyone I know finally learning my true age, which was 50 (ok, so I had shaved a year or ten off), it was an amazing experience. My other proudest running moment was winning the Masters division and placing 5th overall on a hilly, challenging course at the Zooma Colorado 10k in 2011. Oh, and having Libby James pass me like I was standing still during a 5k was pretty cool too!
I live in Wyoming, which is the antithesis of my ideal place to live. I love hot weather, sandy beaches, huge cacti, and the ocean. Wyoming is cool, windy, and the only water I regularly see is the melted puddles of snow in the winter and rain in the summer! I’m still working on my escape plan, and someday will take my daily run alongside the ocean in California, or in the desert of Arizona.
I have two amazing sons; one runs to stay in shape for other sports, and the other takes it more seriously. The two half marathons I’ve run with him have been my favorite races. My husband is also a runner, and my #1 training partner.
As for my career, I’m a 4th grade teacher, but if there’s another occupation that will give me summers off, mid-year breaks, and let me walk out the door at 3:45 every day, sign me up!
I’m looking forward to sharing my running and training journey with the Salty readers, and am so thankful to be a part of this amazing team!