This is my fourth year participating in the Year in Running link up first hosted by Miss Zippy (Amanda), and now hosted by Courtney of Eat Pray Run DC. (Here’s my post from 2014, my post from 2015 and my post from 2016). I love the opportunity to look back on my year, to reflect on what went well, and what didn’t. Usually when I do this I find out that I was far more successful than I give myself credit for as I can be rather hard on myself, or it can help me to make plans for the next year.
Best race experience?
Truthfully I only did three races this past year so picking my best race experience is quite easy. Hands down my best race experience was Ragnar Cottage Country with my team #cheksquad.
I had a blast with my team – we had lots of laughs, worked well together and deepened existing friendships and developed new friendships. The race itself was also well done with lots of little extras that really added to my enjoyment like the giant bonfire, free hot chocolate, s’mores, Ferris Buellers Day Off playing on the big screen etc. I also enjoyed the camping part. Yes, I did also run, it wasn’t all just walking tacos, hot chocolate and marshmallows – you can read my recap here.
The year got off to a slow start with very little running, and when I did run I hated it. All of that changed in August when I committed to running more consistently. By October I was running a lot better. There was one epic morning run with Becky that stands out in my mind. We went over to the school to do some speed repeats before work. Unfortunately Becky’s leg was bothering her, so instead of her running at her own pace she paced me for my repeats. I ran fast and strong, stronger than I have in a few years and it felt awesome! The consistent running had paid off and I felt like my “old” self again.
Best new piece of gear?
Hands down it’s my Salomon Speedcross 4 GTX shoes. They were fantastic on the trails for Ragnar Cottage Country and are now proving themselves to be perfect for winter running. These are my current running prized possession.
Best running advice you’ve received this year:
This one is easy to answer. Following Ragnar Niagara I asked one of my teammates what made them such a fast runner. I was looking for a quick fix answer of course, like perhaps a supplement, a pre or post-run routine etc but instead he told me his secret was consistency – he ran often, usually 5 times a week. While it wasn’t the answer I was looking for, in August I decided to try the advice and committed to running four times a week. I shared a post about my results two months ago, and I’m happy to say that I’m still running consistently 5 months later and it’s made a huge difference. I feel better, I lost a lot of weight (18 lbs and counting!), lost 6% bodyfat, am faster and more importantly I’m enjoying running again.
Most inspirational runner?
Well I guess since the best running advice I received this year inspired me to become a much better version of myself I would say that this year the most inspirational runner to me was Erik.
Favorite picture from a run or race this year:
I took this one on my run today. It captures the beauty that can be found when we take a moment to run around and explore nature. That’s what I love the most about running, it gives me an opportunity to travel slower than I do by car, but faster than walking, so I can see the world around me. There’s lots of hidden beauty in this world if we go looking for it.
If you could sum up your year in a couple of words, what would they be?
Frustration, injury, consistency, peace. I was in a battle with myself at the beginning of the year – struggling with my poor nutrition, laziness, fatigue, and an injured lower back caused by a weak core. Everything that was “wrong” with me was caused by myself – I was being my own worst enemy. In August I began turning that around and through consistency with running I’ve found my peace.
Bonus Question – What’s on your running plan for 2018?
More consistency and more trail running. I really found my love of running again this year through trail running and consistency.
How was your year of running?
What was your best run?
Linking up with Eat Pray Run DC
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