|One of my favorite races from 2014! Trail 30k near Asheville. First in AG and an incredible amount of peace and freedom that was found!|
Let's see if I can make this post short and sweet! I'm jumping in on Miss Zippy's Year of Running link up. I've only done a handful of link up posts since starting this blog but this one is fun and simple!
2014 was a very memorable year for me with running and racing! I spent most my year in Asheville, NC where I truly tapped into my love for trail running. I have so many amazing memories from running there and training for Boston 2014. It was one of my favorite running years that I've ever had. But for different reasons than the past. 2014 also brought an incredible amount of travel where I was able to run in so many beautiful and new places: St. Croix (a 20 miler on this island in the Caribbean was long and hot but unique in a really powerful way.), Boston (visiting a friend and for Boston 14), Charleston, Savannah, Tennessee, Colorado, and so much more! Now, living in Bend, OR, running has taken an entirely new page where almost all my runs are on trails and I start training for my first trail 50k (and Boston 15) TODAY! No personal records with running in 2014 but definitely some personal FREEDOMS with running! I've redefined what running is in my life and I'm even more thankful for all this sport offers!
Best race experience? Even though Boston turned out to be quite rough at the end (what marathon doesn't really?) with throwing up and finishing slower than I wanted, I was proud of my 3:28 and so so grateful to be there with my whole family and some very special friends during such a powerful year for the Boston Marathon. I even got to ride the bus to the starting line with my dear friend Jenn. So thankful to have had this experience! I'm breaking the rule here and listing two races by counting my trail 30k in May: Cradle to the Grave 30k in the Pisgah National Forest outside of Asheville. I got to do this with my husband and a few friends. It was my second time doing this race but I was so much more prepared the second time. I ran most of the race by myself but I think it was better that way. This race is perhaps the biggest reason why I'm so drawn to trail running and racing now. Such freedom and peace and joy to be found when you are out there running through such natural beauty.
Best run? I'll choose one of my best runs. Since so many of my runs in 2014 have been favorites, I'm just drawing from a hat here. My best runs have been about the experience...the scenery...the freedom I've found in soaking up the world around me and truly enjoying the run for the gift it is without putting as much into the time on the clock. When I was in Asheville, I ran at night a lot. Not because I couldn't run in the day but because there was such peace to be found running those quiet streets in my small town where I lived. One night in February sticks in my mind the most. I wrote about this in Gift of the Run; Beauty to be Found.
Best new piece of gear? I didn't get much this year when it comes to running gear. A pretty simple year with regards to material stuff. But I did buy a few new Oiselle items. My red Oiselle distance shorts have been WELL LOVED!! I also started running in a new/old pair of Brooks Cascadias. These shoes. ROCK! Next piece of gear on my list: a simple Ironman Timex watch like I used to run with before I got a Garmin. Excited to run Garmin-free for much of my runs and perhaps all my races.
|Pretty sure I wore these red shorts almost daily this summer. Don't judge. I washed them too.|
Best piece of running advice you received? Hmmm, this is hard. I think this goes back to an email I received from someone after a post I wrote near the Boston Marathon in April. They said something to me about staying within myself with my goals. These words stuck with me so powerfully!! I thought on them lots and actually wrote one of my favorite posts about it and how it applied to RUNNING and LIFE. You can read that here: Stay Within Myself.
|Stay Within Myself|
Most inspirational runner? How the heck do I answer that? Gee, so many inspirational runners. I'm inspired daily by so many of you. I'm going to say my friend Jenn. Love this girl so much. She used to write a blog called Running Sane and that's how we met in 2010. Since then, she's become one of the most special people in my life. A sister. Friend. Truly family. We've shared so much of our lives together through daily emails, training logs, trips across the country together, skype chats, and so much more. A constant in my life. The mostly unlikely of friendships considering she lives in northern MN and I've been all over from Oregon to NC, but a friendship that is beyond special. I've had the joy of sharing my training with Jenn through several training cycles and I've been lucky enough to hear about several of hers too. Even when she's not training for anything specific, she inspires me with running (and life in general). Seeing how she focuses on a goal, digs deep, and has fun with her running in off season (but yet still seeking some sort of excellence) makes me want to do the same. Above all, I'm inspired by how she continues to find strength and balance through running. As a mother, wife, sister, daughter and friend. Even though we are often different with our goals with running, when I hear about her goals, workouts and races, something clicks in me and I find a hunger and strength that might have been a bit dusty. She doesn't have much time to train in the winter (and have you ever heard about a northern MN winter? ha!) because of having all three of her kids in competitive hockey (So much involved! And these kids are TALENTED!) and working beyond full time but she still makes time to be her own personal bad Ass with running! Just the other day she wrote to me about her treadmill run (short but sweet) and it made me want to get out there and push myself a bit more than usual! Thanks for inspiring me friend! Looking forward to riding the bus together again in Boston 2015!
|Riding on the bus to Hopkinton with Jenn before the Boston Marathon! The most fun I've had in athlete's village. Laughing before a marathon was energizing!|
If you could sum up your year in a couple of words, what would they be? FREE. PEACEFUL
Your turn. What were your Bests of Running with 2014?? Answer here or link up with Miss Zippy with your own Year of Running 2014 post.