Hello everyone! I am stepping far out of my comfort zone with this, but am looking forward to joining the community! I am not a social media-type person, but enjoy writing, and have guest blogged elsewhere, so am taking the leap to become part of this party! After meeting Salty and Cinnamon in Jacksonville, I started reading your stories and found them interesting, informative, and liked that they are collectively in one place. So I hope to contribute and help others along the way.
I started running in high school and competed through four years of college. While I was pretty good, I didn’t necessarily take it as seriously as I could have. After graduating I ran for fitness for a few years, as I adjusted to life in the Army and being out on my own. I then somewhat randomly got into Modern Pentathlon (swimming, shooting, fencing, horse jumping, and cross-country running) and had the amazing opportunity to train at the Olympic Training Center for two years. It was a great experience, and I learned a lot living the life as a professional athlete! After fracturing three bones in my back falling off a horse during riding practice, I decided it was better to keep both feet on the ground and stick with running.
Over the years, my running journey has covered a lot of ground. I had the opportunity to compete full time for the Army, running in national level races and competing on military teams around the world. I ran through a second deployment, this one for a year, battling sandstorms and plantar fasciitis. I took breaks from serious training or competing, which was probably good for my body and has helped contribute to a long career. I’ve competed in everything from 800m on the track to a trail 50-miler and enjoy the range and variety. Ultimately, I enjoy pushing myself and finding new challenges.
After having my second child in 2014, I got out of the Army to stay home full-time with my kids. I now telecommute for a global public health foundation and fit in running in all my free time (ha ha). My biggest accomplishment is qualifying for a 3rd Olympic Trials Marathon after having two little ones and training mostly while pushing the double jogging stroller. I guess that shows the power of muscle memory and a solid foundation from years of running! I think it also shows how, sometimes, when you don’t put a lot of pressure or expectations on yourself, you’ll get surprising results.
Now that I know I can do it post-baby, my goal is to qualify for one more Trials in the next cycle. I also want to get back into the more mellow world of trail running, and enjoy the balance of competing with also running for sheer enjoyment. I look forward to sharing the journey with the Salty community!