People often ask me how I became so obsessed with running. I have never been part of a track or cross country team, and for me, racing has always been secondary to training.
I started running with a good friend in college. We went to different schools, and would run together in the mornings when we were home for the summer. Initially, our runs were a way for us to catch up and spend some time together, but we began to go farther and father each week. I remember feeling invincible the first time we ran six miles…and I was hooked.
By the end of my sophomore year in college I was running most mornings year-round, and at the end of my junior year, a couple of running friends and I decided to sign up for a marathon. This was in 2006, before marathons really exploded in popularity, and none of us knew anyone who had actually run a marathon. Needless to say, we felt pretty hard-core.
I loved the training. I loved how it felt to run a few miles farther each weekend. I loved the hours spent on running-related internet searches, and the healthy-exhausted feeling I’d get from a good training run.
After my first marathon, I continued running two a year as best as I could. I qualified for Boston in my third race, and kept chasing faster times (although I have yet to break that PR). I had a few breaks due to extended travels, a year in China, and most recently two injury-filled years in Germany, but I continued running even while not training for specific races.
I am in the final stages of a PhD, and so my marathon training is on hold once again. I’m planning to run a few half marathons in the spring of 2015, but I won’t make any more marathon plans until I have my degree in hand. However, I wouldn’t even think of taking a break from running…what better way to relax and get a little peace of mind?
I have happily run all over the world. Here are some highlights: