Welcome to my blog! I started this blog as a journal of sorts to document my adventures as I train this winter, spring and summer for my longest run yet. I’m not going to call it a race, because I am really in no competition with anyone but myself, but the run that I’m going to be participating in is the Wild Duluth 100K and Terribly Tough 10K (https://www.wildduluthraces.com/). If I finish both successfully, I’ll earn the title of Ultimate Wildwoman.

Initially, my heart was set on running the Superior 100 mile fall trail race, but I didn’t get in through the lottery. That’s okay, I certainly wasn’t the only one. I took the missed opportunity to commit to the next biggest challenge that I had in mind and that was a 100K trail race. In reality, it makes sense to step up progressively from a completed 50-miler to a 100K and then a 100-miler. Perhaps fate or divine intervention played a role in this series of events.

I have one hope with this blog. My hope is that I inspire someone to go after a goal that they can’t stop thinking about. There is a reason that you think about it all the time. It’s in your heart. Stop telling yourself that you can’t and start asking yourself HOW. How can you make it happen? Do you need to take some classes, do you need to get up earlier, do you need to find a mentor? Start thinking through how you can take steps forward to go after that goal.

In 2018, I essentially had a hiatus from running consistently. I had finished up a challenge to run 2,017 miles in 2017 and took a break once I hit the goal. For the first half of 2018, I focused on teaching fitness classes until I had a non-running related foot surgery on June 1st. I recovered and had another surgery in September which required me to not do any strenuous activity for another 4 weeks. In the last week of October, I got back to teaching fitness classes and in November, I started introducing more running, in very short distances, back into my routine to focus on being active over the holidays.

As I get back to running on a consistent and focused basis, I thought it would be fun to share the journey. I’m starting at ground zero. Starting in January, I didn’t have a base established. I started with a mile and built on from there. I don’t have a treadmill and will not buy one. I run all of my miles outside for a number of reasons. For one, even if it’s so cold that your eyeballs might freeze shut, it makes me feel alive! The vitamin D from being outside helps improve my mood. Secondly, it toughens you up and helps you solve problems. Figuring out what to wear in negative temps/rain/sleet/snow/spring/hot as hell, etc. sometimes takes a Google search and lots of trial and error. Third, it teaches you to be resilient and that is definitely a skill that you need when you run distance races. You have to believe that you can get through it. When you put in those tough training runs where you get up at ridiculous times of the day or the weather really sucks, you show up for you. That’s so important. You have to believe in you when no one else will.

My total mileage for January came out to 54.3. I’ll take it. My goal was to run at least 3 days a week and I overall met that with the exception of this last week of the month when our temps dipped so low that I simply didn’t have an adequate base layer when it comes to pants to wear. I had double layered my pants during some -20 degree weather and I had some pretty blotchy, red and cold thighs afterwards. I knew that I wouldn’t be sufficiently dressed for the temps on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. I’m hopeful that our coldest days of winter are OVER.