Why I Run

My history with running has been somewhat of a rollercoaster ride.  In my junior year of high school, I joined track with one my BFFs.  That following summer, we just both started going on long runs together and we each dropped a lot of weight.  Running became our obsession.  I knew very little about it as a sport (even though I was in track) at the time.  About two months after high school graduation, I was shipped off to San Antonio Texas for basic training.  There I ran some more.  I dropped even more weight since I was working out like crazy in the dead summer in Texas.  I came back home hungry and continued running but not to the extent of what I was doing in basic training.

Enter college.  Beer, late night eats, and a lot more studying.  It left little time for me to just go out and run.  I ran or went to the gym when I felt my clothes getting tighter or when my roommate decided to be active.  It still wasn't enough to cancel out the booze & late night eating. And there for the weight slowly crept back on.  I remained somewhat active through out the 4 years, manily because I had PT stands to meet with the Air Force.  About a month before my PT test occured, I would really get down to business with running, sit-ups & push ups. After that, it would kind of fall by the way side.

before the nike 10k race
In May 2008, I graduated from college and moved to Chicago.  I had about a month to bop around the city until I started my new job.  So one day, for funsies, I went running.  I've always heard that Chicago is one of the best places for runners and that day proved to be very true.  There were so many people on the trail, not only running, but biking and walking as well.  I loved running near the beach and through Lincoln Park so much that I went back the next day, and the day after that.  Before I knew it, I was signing up for my first ever official race, The Nike 10K Human Race.  After I ran that race, I felt a great sense of accomplishment and was anxious to do more.  I kept running in my neighborhood and on the trails but never signed up for a race and never pushed myself as hard as I could have.  Starting a new job (that was a long commute away) and running after work became exhausting and I lost my motivation.  Not to mention, LC was on his first deployment, so I kind of fell into a funk.

waiting to start our shuffle!

Then in July 2009 something BIG & life-changing happened.  I got engaged. I told myself that I would not look back at my wedding pictures with regret because of how I looked.  In March 2010, my sister and I ran the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle.  The weather was cold and sucky, but  we powered through it.  I was so happy and thrilled that I had beat my previous 10k time by almost two minutes.  After the Shamrock Shuffle, my sister and I got a crazy, wild idea of doing a 1/2 marathon the same summer.  We did the race, but I definitely underestimated the need for training.  And that shows in my time.  The next day, I felt like I had been hit by a truck.  A big 18-wheeler.  My whole body was sore. Places I didn't know I could hurt, felt painful.  A few weeks later a friend of mine told me she was running a 1/2 marathon in Middleton, WI.  Being the crazy person that I am, I signed up.  I was determined to beat my time.  I followed Hal Higdon's training program this time.  And I beat my time.  By a lot.    
There's a smile on my face but that's the moment I wanted to collapse to the ground

Successfully finishing my 2nd 1/2 marathon 2 months later. I'm the one in the blue.
Fast forward to February 2011 and next thing I know, I'm signing up for my first marathon.  Within the last year, people have asked me why I run so much?  Because I like it.  It keeps me accountable and active.  Running is the only thing that has helped me shed pounds.  I like the "me" time aspect of it, but I also like running with LC or other friends.  They challenge me to run faster.  It keeps me sane and takes the stress out of my life.  I like getting sweaty during a workout. It makes me feel like I've done something awesome.  People have also told me that I'm crazy.  And that's probably a little bit true too.  Afterall, running 26.2 miles just because takes a little bit of crazy, but I'm up for the challenge.               

Past Races
*Nike Human Race 10k, August 2008- 1:08:22 
*Turkey Trot 8k, November 2009- 55:34
*Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8k, March 2010- 53:42 (PR)
*Rock n Roll Chicago 1/2 Marathon, August 1 2010- 3:12:02
*Haunted Hustle 1/2 Marathon, October 2010- 2:25:26 (PR).

Upcoming Races
Lake Country 1/2 Marathon-September 3, 2011