It has been my goal since I started running almost 2 years ago to become more fit and strong. I never thought in my wildest dreams that I would ever complete a marathon, let alone an ultra marathon.
In August of 2013 I joined The SF Marathon Training Group or Run365 as it is affectionately known. I knew immediately that this group was for me. They gave me such a well-rounded approach to running. Being a complete beginner over the age of 50 I needed a lot of extra coaching and support. I needed help with not only how to increase mileage, but the best way to fuel, how to make sure you are hydrating correctly, how to stretch before and after a run plus much more.
What I didn’t realize is that once I started running I didn’t want to stop. I mean I NEVER want to stop running ever. I love it, I really and truly love it. I feel more like myself when I am running, especially when I am running on the amazing trails of Northern California.
1 month after I started running, one of my coaches told me about Brazen Racing and how wonderful they are and what an amazing job they do putting on trail races. My first 5K trail race was Bear Creek at Briones Regional Park.
It was so wonderful, I felt great and was so proud of my accomplishment. This year, I will be running the Bear Creek HALF – I am so excited! I have attached the map and elevation chart for you just in case you would like to have a peek.
Bear Creek Half Map
So, now to my major accomplishment! Starting and completing my first 50K. I set a goal for myself to run Brazen Racing’s Dirty Dozen 12 hour race and to complete a 50K in 10 hours or less. If I could do this then I would sign up for the North Face Endurance Challenge, which take place in the Marin Headlands at the beginning of December. Not only did I complete the 50K, I did it in 8:37 minutes. I know by Ultra Marathon standards – the time isn’t that impressive but for me it was outstanding. Not only did I run 33.7 miles which is more than a 50K (31.07 miles) but I did it under my goal time by an hour and 1/2. I am so proud of what I’ve done and in the time I’ve done it. If anyone that reads this, is over 50, has never run before and thinks they can’t do an ultra marathon – I am here to prove otherwise! Anyone can do anything if you put your mind to it! Be smart about it though, use all the resources you can; read any and all books and videos. Find a good running group or a running coach and just start. That is the hardest part, starting. Maybe you’ll be like me, once you start you just won’t want to stop! Below is a picture of me crossing the finish line of my first 50K!
Below are more links for races in the area that are worth checking out: