I’ve been super involved with running for a while, so it would have been tough for me to spend even more time on running-related things, but in 2018, I made that happen.
At the end of 2017, I became a BibRave team captain for the East Region, a role that I held throughout 2018 and continue today. Then, in the spring of 2018, I began freelancing for RunWashington.com. In the summer, I became a Road Runners Club of America certified coach.
I’d say it was a successful year, running-wise, although like in 2017, I didn’t hit most of my goals.
Goals: Looking Back
There was one big goal that I hit, which was running 2,018 kilometers in 2018. I ended up with well over that number — 1,342.07 miles, my highest-ever yearly mileage. I’ve been tracking my mileage since 2011.
The time goals did not happen for me this year. My sub-50-minute 10K goal has been around since 2014, and will be continuing along to 2019. I’d also hoped to run a 10-miler in under 1:30.
And, the goal that I thought would be the easiest, running a race on my birthday, didn’t happen, either. The race I’d planned on was canceled because of the weather forecast, and so was another race that I decided on after the other race’s cancellation. I did get the 10 miles I planned to run in.
I also hit one of the three blog goals that I set. I did end up with my highest number of blog views ever, and the number has risen each year.
I didn’t get to 300 email/WordPress followers, but this number did grow drastically from the time I wrote the goal — 172 on Jan. 6, 2018, to 270 today — Jan. 7, 2019. Unfortunately, some of the names of these “followers” seem awfully sketchy, and I’m pretty sure they are spam accounts. But there are certainly real people in there, too.
I had also hoped to make it to 800 likes for my blog’s Facebook page — She Runs by the Seashore — by the end of 2018. I realized I wasn’t going to get there, but I did have a huge surge at the end of the year when I posted that I hoped to make it to at least 700 likes. My following grew dramatically, and I was able to make it from the 660s to 700. I’m currently on my way to 800 likes, as I now have 706.
Time is not everything, but I’m going to go through the races that I ran in 2018 and see what my best time was at each. This way, when I go through my 2019 races, I can see whether my times, in general, improved or not. I haven’t set a personal record in a long time, so this will help me have something to compare to.
I ran fewer races in 2018 than in 2017, which was somewhat intentional. Although I do enjoy races, sometimes it’s nice to be home, or just go for a fun run. I also got to run many of these for free, but when you’re paying for races — or travel expenses — that does add up. I actually only had to pay for nine of these races.
Fastest time of 2018: eRace the Stigma 5K — 26:59
Fastest time of 2018: Mike Sterling 10K — 58:36
Fastest time of 2018: Tim Kennard River Run — 1:34:43
Half Marathon Races
Fastest time of 2018: St. Michaels Running Festival Half Marathon — 2:12:05
Half Marathon Races – Pacer
Fastest time of 2018: Vermont City Marathon — 5:07:17
Places I Ran
I just did an interview with my friend Earl Holland for his podcast, The Sports Refuge Podcast, and realized that last year, I ran races in five states — Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia and Vermont — and Washington, D.C.
Although not for races, I also ran in Pennsylvania and Texas during 2018. So, last year, I ran in seven states and D.C.!
Here are some of the places I ran for the first time in 2018, in chronological order:
- Washington & Old Dominion Trail – Arlington, Virginia
- Baker Park – Frederick, Maryland
- Northside Park – Ocean City, Maryland
- The Great Allegheny Passage and more in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania
- Theodore Roosevelt Island – Washington, D.C.
- The trail around Lady Bird Lake – Austin, Texas
Products I Tested
I had a busy year of product testing for BibRave, and I even got to attend The Running Event at the end of November, which was an awesome experience — plus, I got even more products to test while I was there!
- Sweat X Sport
- AfterShokz Trekz Air
- FlipBelt Crops
- Gatorade Endurance Formula Powder (watermelon) and Energy Gels (mango)
- Shady Rays Signature Series Sunglasses
- Mercury Mile Box
- Knockaround Sunglasses
- Bedgear Balance 1.0 Performance Pillow
- SPIbelt SPIbeams LED Hat
- Orange Mud Transition & Seat Wrap
- SABRE Runner Defense Spray and other safety items
- Zwift and Zwift RunPod
- Running clothes from Handful, Brooks, Vuori and Incrediwear
- WIN Sports Detergent
- Brooks Adrenaline GTS 19, Altra Escalante 1.5 and Vooray ACE Backpack
- Socks from CEP Compression and Incrediwear
- Running-related items to use when you’re not running — Arcanum, Addaday and nuun
People I Met
I had the opportunity to meet a few famous people in the running world this year. These included Meb Keflezighi before the Vermont City Marathon, Kathrine Switzer before Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach, Mark Cucuzzella before Freedom’s Run, Peter Sagal while he was on his book tour and Des Linden — if you count seeing her at a party meeting her — at the Brooks party at The Running Event.
Eastern Shore Running Club
I had another great year as the secretary of the Eastern Shore Running Club. We had our highest-ever membership that I’m aware of — 114 members — and I got to know more runners in our community. Some of these runners I really saw progress in their running as they came to group runs week after week.
We have had some really big groups of runners come out on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. Join us anytime — for a group selfie and a run — on Tuesday or Wednesday at 6 p.m. We’re currently running from Salisbury Bible Fellowship near Salisbury University, and when it starts getting light out at night again, we’ll move back to Ben’s Red Swings at the Salisbury City Park.
We also put together a team for the RRCA Club Challenge last year, launched our new website, and the scholarship committee met for the first time at the end of the year. We also helped our community through volunteering in 2018, from working finish lines to picking up trash at the city park. I also got to present a running clinic at VP Shoes in September.
I’m so proud of our club and I am excited for 2019!
I mentioned that I started writing for RunWashington in 2018. I have really enjoyed freelancing for the publication and enjoyed meeting fellow members of the team this past weekend in Arlington.
Check out my 2018 articles here:
- Oakton native and AU alumna wins Rock ‘n’ Roll half
- Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon winners keep titles in the D.C. area
- D.C.-based nonprofit supports young female Ethiopian runners
- An ‘absolute blessing:’ D.C.-area mother and daughter run Boston Marathon together
- Northern Va.’s Roy Englert, 95, chases the clock to break world records
- Marathon training brings Joe Divel’s family together
- When it comes to balancing extracurriculars, each runner is different
- Feda, Mulugeta lead Northwood to second place at state meet
Up Next: Goals
My next post will be on my goals for 2019. I’m looking forward to sharing them with you and creating accountability for myself!