Hey everyone! As a reader and lover of Salty Running I can’t even tell you how excited I am to be part of this community of strong, beautiful, smart, and fast women.
I began running about six years ago after a full-time desk job left me feeling like I needed to move. I was absolutely miserable sitting still all day staring at a computer screen, so I began to go for short jogs every day on my one-hour lunch break. I started out just going for a slow and easy 30-minute jog, but that made me feel so good that I wanted to do more. So I started running faster so I could get more miles in before my lunch break ended.
I remember one day I cranked out five miles in 30 minutes and felt like I was absolutely going to die, but afterwards, I felt like a million bucks. I returned to my desk all sweaty and disgusting for the rest of my shift but glowing because I was so excited about running.
About a year later, when I was nineteen, I signed up for my first race, the DC Rock ‘n Roll marathon, because I wanted to be able to brag to everyone that I had run 26.2 miles. My longest run leading up to that race was only a 10-miler that I did around a concrete track one day on a whim because I thought it might be fun. I was wrong and it totally sucked, but I was determined to race that marathon.
When marathon morning rolled around I was absolutely terrified that I would never be able to run 26.2 miles, but as soon as the gun went off my fears went away. I cried for the first couple of miles because I was so excited about conquering my goal. It was definitely hard, and those last six miles were killer, but when I finished I knew I was in love with running and wanted to do it forever. Surprisingly, I ended up taking 2nd place and the race director told me not to take the prize money if I wanted to run in college. I had never considered that option but I listened, even though that money was calling my name, and didn’t take it.
Soon after the marathon, I walked on to George Mason University, a D1 college in Northern Virginia. I had no idea there was such a thing as a workout; I thought you just … ran. My coach had to explain to me how long a track was and how many laps equaled a mile. Bless their poor hearts for being so patient with me.
Once we got all those silly formalities out of the way, my amazing coach, who still coaches me now, guided me to four Atlantic-10 conference titles, three NCAA preliminary round appearances, and a school record in the 10k. I am so incredibly grateful for running because it gave me direction, passion, and excitement when, otherwise, I probably wouldn’t have finished school.
I graduated in 2015 and still live in Northern Virginia, spending roughly 75% of my life sitting in traffic. I’m an accountant trying to juggle my professional career, which I love, with my aspiring running career. I just missed the qualifying for the Olympic Trials Marathon by 30ish seconds at the Jacksonville Half this past January. It was a heart-breaker but a huge motivator at the same time! I’ve developed a huge respect for all the women out there who are killing it in the workplace or devoting all their time to being awesome mothers (or both!), all the while running fast in their spare time.
I have a lot to learn from y’all and Salty Running is the perfect place for that!