It’s crazy how much can change over the course of a year. Admittedly, 2017 did not turn out the way that I expected (both for better and worse). There were some high highs (Postpartum BQ! Stroller running with Iz!) followed by some low lows (ongoing health issues, missing the actual Boston cut-off). It’s been a difficult year in many ways, but there have also been some really awesome things.
Looking ahead to 2018, I am hopeful and trying to look forward, but most importantly, never forgetting where I have been. When things are going well its so easy for that to become the “norm” and to forget that others may be struggling. I know that during those times I am guilty of becoming completely absorbed in what I am doing and forgetting everything (and everyone) that may have brought me to that point. Reach high. Remain humble.
Some exciting things already on the horizon for 2018:
Nuun: I am excited to announce that I have been selected as a Nuun Ambassador, for #teamnuun, which I am really excited about. I have been a Nuun convert for a few years now and it is my electrolyte replacement beverage of choice. Being selected for their ambassador program (about 300 of us across the country) is an awesome way to share my love of the product and to build relationships with other amazing athletes across all disciplines!
Oiselle Podium Project – Ragnar Chicago: Oiselle has had a huge impact on me, both athletically and as a person. A few years ago a friend of mine (and fellow former Lululemon junkie) mentioned a new brand that she had found and was loving. Admittedly, at first my attraction to the brand was strictly fashion-oriented. However, I quickly learned that Oiselle’s influence in the space reaches so much further than having “cute” running clothes.
I joined the Oiselle Volee racing team shortly thereafter. I was hesitant to join for many reasons — it was expensive and I wasn’t sure how much I would actually get out of it — especially given the fact that at the time I joined I had just found out that I was pregnant and knew I would not be doing a lot of racing or running meet-ups.
Immediately after joining, I knew that I had made the right choice based on the social media community alone. Too often social media (and especially women’s groups) has the tendency to turn catty and/or judgmental. To the contrary, I found the Oiselle ladies, who come from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences, to be anything but. Especially as a new mom (and returning to running in this new role trying to balance both my identity as a runner and as a mother) I found the group nothing but supportive. This is why I am SO EXCITED to be part of this team!
I haven’t committed to any goals yet this year (partially being conservative with my health/ partially being scared of being burned again) but I have decided that insofar as my decisions are governed by fear – I am going to face them.
I have found a podcast that I really love (shoutout to @NicoleAntionette and Real Talk Radio) and have really been moved by the mantra “you can do big things.” I have learned that the things that excite me the most are often the things that terrify me up until the point that I do them.
This was true of my Ragnar Trail experience as well as my more recent Huff Relay endeavor. The Huff Relay was definitely among one of the crazier things that I have done. It was outside. At the end of December. In Indiana. In the snow/ice/whatever other weather condition the temperamental midwest decides is seasonally appropriate. We were lucky enough to be running in temperatures which were hovering around zero (well negative with windchill) and freshly fallen snow (read – 5″ of snow/ice) from the evening before. The drive – which should have taken about 3 hours – ended up being around 6. I was on a team with a bunch of ladies from Oiselle whom I had never met before.
I was scared – I had only run a trail once before. It was freezing and I didn’t know if I had the right gear or shoes. I had never personally met any of the ladies I was running with (which took me a whole new step outside my comfort zone). Every rational part of me told me that it was a horrible idea and I should bail. But I had made a commitment and I was going to honor it.
The experience itself was surreal. And awesome. And freezing cold. But once I finally thawed out (after being outside for nearly 8 hours) I realized something else. The experience changed me. It made me a braver person. It allowed me to prove to myself that I can do big things – even when the rational part of me tells me that I can’t (or that I shouldn’t).