Well there we have it. Yet another incredible year is coming to a close, and I find myself writing my third year-end review blog (check out my posts from 2012 & 2013!). It’s crazy to look back and see the change and growth that I’ve experienced over the past few years, but it’s also great to reminisce about the ever-evolving lives of those around me, and of the continual expansion of the world of Obstacle Racing.
This year brought with it many ups and downs, many joys and frustrations, many set-backs and triumphs. I’ve met some truly inspirational people, established some great friendships, and continued to build a great family of OCR fanatics. And as is true for many of us, late-December brings with it a sudden sense of introspection as I to look back in amazement at a year filled with experiences that I could never have imagined would come to be.
In 2014 I had the pleasure of participating in 26 races, the events varied from OCR to road and trail races. Race distances ranged from 5K up to my *almost* 50K, a race which also doled out my very first DNF (first time for everything, right?!?). Some races I ran competitively; several of which earned me a victorious podium finish, and one even earned me a $100 check for a 3rd place team finish (RIP Extreme Nation)! Others I ran just for the fun of it, as I was happy to share laughs with friends and family as we played carefree in mud and muck, and cheered and supported each other over difficult obstacles. Most races were run in the Florida heat, but others were experienced in rain, cold temperatures, and one was even run in the snow! I also earned my very first Spartan Trifecta (finally!), and the best part is that my hubby accompanied me at each of those Spartan events! Which means… yes, he drank the kool-aid and is now an OCR fanatic just like the rest of us!
Not only did I have the pleasure of experiencing many different races this year, but I was thrilled to begin working with Reebok Spartan Race in April as a Marketing & Editorial Contributor. This opportunity has provided me the ability to write for the Spartan Blog as well as the Spartan Race Magazine on a weekly and monthly basis. In addition, I was also able to experience behind-the-scenes action by helping with event Media and PR at the Utah Beast and Virginia Super. Traveling to work at these races was incredible! In addition to helping build and work these events, I was also able to participate in sweeping both of these epic courses, providing me with experiences which both amazed and humbled me beyone belief.
But my life does not involve only racing, and huge milestones were reached not only individually, but also as a family this year. Mason, now almost 6 years old, started Kindergarten this fall! He’s also run multiple races this year, adding to his ever-growing collection of medals, and has already asked if we can do an Obstacle Race for his birthday in February. He has become much more active in racing, and was excited to participate in quite a few of the local adult OCR courses with Adam and I this year. Kids races now make him mad because they end too quickly… evidently we’ve created a monster.
After nearly 8 years working for the same company, I made the decision that it was time to move on and started a new job in late September! I truly enjoy my position with Reebok Spartan Race, but my day job is what I count on to pay the bills, and I’ve found my new position at a new company to be much less stressful and much more fulfilling (#winning).
Finally, two weeks ago Adam and I closed on our very first house! After nearly 12 years of renting, the time finally came to buy, and we chose the perfect place for us! We love it! A rope climb has already been added to the tree in our backyard, and we plan to add in a spear throw soon as well.
So there you have it, an insanely busy, action-packed, awesome year! It was great!
As I look ahead to a new year, I anticipate that things may be a bit more laid back and quiet, as nesting into our new home and family life will take priority. With that said, I’m already building up a pretty exciting race schedule, and plan to continue sharing my adventures with all of you.
Thanks to every one of you for following along! Here’s to a fantastic new year to each one of you!