I grew up being active in everything from gymnastics to volleyball. I did my first sprint triathlon when I was 9 years old. I saw my mom running and competing and I wanted to try the things my mom was doing. Watching my mom push herself and work hard for something was very motivating, even as a child. I also wanted to come home dirty and sweaty! It just seemed like a fun thing to do. When I was 11, she completed her first 100 mile trail race and it was just so insane but also totally awesome. I ran with her across the finish line and it was an incredible feeling to be a part of something that amazing. The opportunity to be a part of something amazing set a spark inside of me.
I Fell In Love With Trail Running
I didn’t really start to love running until after high school, but then the bug hit me and has been growing since I did my first trail race. I’m 32 now and race 3 triathlons a year as well as a couple trail 50ks and some shorter trail races. There is something very special about running trails that you can’t get anywhere else. It’s being surrounded by nature that makes it much more enjoyable than running on the road. And the views! Trail running can take you to some breathtaking places.
RA Doesn’t Slow Me Down
In 2014, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis but haven’t let it slow me down. Living with RA presents its own set of challenges. I’ll have flare ups where I can’t use my hand for a couple days or I’ll be extremely fatigued. It just makes things harder, but not insurmountable. I raced a tri once when I had a wrist flare. It hurt so much to take off my wetsuit and shift my bike. Every bump I went over felt like I was being stabbed. I knew that the pain was temporary so I didn’t let it slow me down, afterall, my legs were working! I keep up with my meds and try to sleep and recover properly so I can continue doing the things I love. I’m also a dancer and aerialist and am feeling stronger than ever!
Keep Going You’re Doing Great
Being an athlete teaches you so much about tenacity and perseverance. We all face challenges while training and racing and it’s in finding our way through those challenges that we become stronger people. You won’t always be the fastest, you won’t always have a good race, you won’t always want to get up and do the workout, but as long as you keep going, you’re doing great!
My mom became my inspiration at age 9 and today I am training and racing in these wonderful sports thanks to her. So glad racing is back!!!