A Look Back on 2015: Chasing A Time & Trying Again Another Day

Now that I’m all settled in a new place, here’s one of the posts that’s been sitting around…

The last year has been a bit unusual for me.

Over the past 3-4 years, I’ve pretty much PRed every race I’ve run.

If not a new PR, I’ve run exactly the same time as my then-PR (twice! Once in back to back half marathons and another with 5Ks that were a year apart). Disregarding races when coming back from injuries of course.

So the Boston Marathon was a bit of an anomaly.

Add into that, Boston is Boston. It’s a race full of fast people that some of us (who are young or not serial Boston runners) have dreamed the ‘if only one day I can be fast enough to run it’ dream.

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Another Adventure Begins in a New State

In a ridiculous amount of irony, every time I commit to posting more my life takes a turn for the crazier.

Since I last posted, I’ve taken  a new job, moved partway across the country (again), and gotten myself settled in a totally awesome and new place. Surprise! This one I think will be to my writing advantage this time.

My new job is with Backflip Studios, still in the gaming space. The best part? It’s based in Boulder, Colorado!


As I type this, I’ve just had an after work run with some of my new colleagues & out here, it feels like the possibilities are endless. (Looks that way too when you have the very majestic Rocky Mountains as your backdrop every day.)

There’s running (and many, many running groups), hiking, cycling, mountain biking, and less than 2 hours to some great ski locations (when it’s cold). Plus, while it may suck now as I get used to it, living and training at elevation (~5,400 ft!) is going to be great down the road!

When it’s all said and done, I am super excited with this turn my life has taken and already looking forward to the adventures on the horizon. This blog may just grow to be way more multi-sport, as I definitely want to chronicle attempts at new sports. Half the hilarity is when you fai- ahem, I mean stumble!

Before I get too distracted by all of that, I will say that I have a couple of posts that were never published or not quite completed from the past 3-4 months. So expect to see a few of those go live in the meantime.

New adventures await!


A New Year & New Goals

Welcome to 2016!

2015 was an exciting year, running my first Boston Marathon and then following it up like a ridiculous person with another marathon barely 5 weeks later. While enjoyable, it did set me back a bit in regards to how my knees felt and slowed me down a bit more than I was expecting. Luckily, with no other races planned I kept it light until the end of September with a half marathon. Then I kept with the time off.

Well the madness of the end of the year is gone and I’m back at it. No races on the schedule and nothing planned besides adding exercise back into my routine, including regular strength training and more variety of activities like hiking.

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I Ran My Slowest Half Yet & Had A Blast

Fair warning: half recap & half general thoughts ahead.

Last weekend I ran the San Jose Rock’N’Roll Half Marathon.

It was my slowest half marathon yet at 2:13, yet it’s probably near the top as most fun I’ve had during a race. Normally, I’m a hyper-competitive racer & while that is fun in itself, there’s always a little extra stress involved in chasing a good time.

I signed up for San Jose several months ago, when I still had plenty of time to train and the intention of doing so (it’s a flat course, so could be a good one to try for a PR). Unfortunately, life got in the way between then & now. No training happened and running by itself barely did.

To make competition even less likely, I caught a cold the weekend before that I’d been fighting to shake all week just to do the race. Before Friday, I wasn’t sure I could make it to my car without passing out. So my participation was up in the air. Luckily, I managed to fight the cold off enough to at least take part but I knew I wasn’t going to be really competitive.

At the start, I had decided I would just aim to stay under 2 hours. Pacing for the first few miles had me comfortably around a 1:55 finish time. But this is the Rock’N’Roll race series, what’s a good race without some good music?

Somewhere around mile 5 or 6, I passed one of the bands & they were playing a song I love: Flirting with Disaster by Molly Hatchet (thanks dad!). And I decided: why struggle to get a “good time” when I know I wasn’t in shape for it, when I could take it easy, enjoy the music & just have fun making it to the finish line?

So that’s what I did! Took short breaks near the bands to dance & enjoy the music, walked through water stations while I chatted with the volunteers, and just appreciated a beautiful day in San Jose. I did have to make use of my trusty inhaler once during mile 12. It worked out though, as I was joined by a few mobile paramedics checking on me while I walked and got to chat. They can definitely appreciate not pushing too hard to make it to the finish line.

I remember always telling myself that if I was injured or not feeling well or not trained up or any other excuse, that I’d simply bask in running a race and having fun. Yet I’ve always been too competitive to do so. This is the first time and I had a blast!

Sure, I’d love to come back & run RnR San Jose again when I’m trained because it really is a flat course. It could be great to chase a PR on it. Yet when it was all said & done, I feel just as accomplished finishing this half marathon slower than any other I’ve run and rocking out during it.

The moral of this story: it doesn’t always have to be about competition or chasing a PR. It is entirely possible to just have fun at a race.

Race Recap: Mountains 2 Beach Marathon

And that’s marathon #4!

This race wasn’t originally planned. After recovering from Boston and from the cold I got following Boston, I started looking around to see if I could find a marathon to make another attempt at a 3:30. During Boston, I made the conscious choice 16 miles in to pull back. So I felt like it was worth looking a few weeks out rather than picking a race later in the year & having to train the full 4 months ago.

Luckily, a fellow runner and friend (Katherine) was also chasing a 3:30. After asking what time frame I should be looking at, to realistically recover and get in a couple weeks of training, she and I connected to try and find a race.

By the way, the recommendation was to find a race 7-8 weeks out. We picked one that was 5.
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Recap: 119th Boston Marathon

So life has been pretty busy since I ran Boston, but I hopped back on to write a new post & realized that even though I wrote up my entire recap for Boston a few days after, I never actually published it! Self fail. So here’s that post, unchanged, a month late. Oops?


Woo, got that off my chest. Final finish time was 3:45:54 for a pretty solid marathon. Now this recap is going to be all over the place, mostly because the day itself was crazy and partly because I’m not sure quite how to express it.

Fair warning: really long post ahead!


Even the airport got some Boston Marathon flavor.

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New Shoes & 4 Weeks to Boston

28 days exactly to Boston! Woot woot!

Also, have my wave/corral assignment. Wave 3 corral 2 which means I get to start just before 11AM. Not as late as I was expecting & a goal to work towards. Need to get under 3:30 in the future to make it into Wave 2.

A bit late as I picked these up a few weeks ago, but new shoes!!! My most recent before this were the Saucony Ride 6 & Asics Gel Cumulus 15, both of which were good. Loved the Asics, but not sure I loved the Sauconys the way I have other shoes in the past (including other Sauconys). They’ve been getting up in miles, meaning that I was better off replacing them in enough time to transition over pre-Boston.

So the new ones!

First, switched out the Sauconys for the Mizuno Wave Rider 18. Light but cushy & good as a speed shoe.

20150317_074035Next, I stayed strong (mostly because of their comfort) with the Asics Gel Cumulus 16. Been a while since I’ve bought back to back pairs like that.


Haven’t decided yet which pair I’ll wear for the big race. Traditionally I go for the cushier with marathons (so the Asics) and leave the lighter for halfs & shorter. But the runs I’ve been on so far with Mizunos (10 mile tempo for example) have felt pretty great. Both are going with me on the trip, so no rush to decide.

We’ll see post-Boston if I’m racing enough to justify a super lightweight pair just for racing. Not waffles I think, but maybe something like the Saucony Kinvara.