2019. If I had known the places I would go this year – I wouldn’t have believed it. Phoenix, Grand Canyon (Rim2Rim2Rim), Banff, my second 100 mile (112 miles) Traversing Connecticut by foot, Adirondacks almost every weekend (11 weekends/24 days in the ADKS), Catskills, 6 days in Italy — Traversing the Alta Via 1 trail, crewing friends in Virginia (pacing 33 miles of Yeti 100). Crewing and pacing Scott in Kentucky (19 miles of War hammer 100). Miles in Harriman State Park, and New Jersey. Peak count totalling 85 for 2019 –> 27 ADK High Peaks, 38 ADK non-High Peaks, 4 Catskill Peaks, and 16 other peaks ranging from Mountains in AZ, Italy, and CT.
I even did some races — Breakneck half marathon (Beacon, NY) , New Paltz Pizza Challenge ( 😅 ), Sweeping Iron Mines (New Jersey), Twisted branch 100k, Philly Marathon. A couple relays — Mighty Misquito 99, and Cast A Shadow snowshoe relay.
Italy brought me out of my shell for the first time in a long time – around a large group of people. I could spend everyday with that group.
I spent most adventure time with Strat – as we would pack up and drive to the Adirondacks late every Thursday night. Car sleep or no sleep and hike Friday/Saturday and head home. Never had to pack or unpack – as we just used the same stuff every weekend. (No Strat and are are not dating — as everyone always thinks so :p )
Mertsock would join us last minute any chance he could – and would lead us on the most epic trips.
2019 had its struggles.
In 2018 everything felt hard. I always thought I was bad at hills. I was always the last one up a mountain – Strat always had to wait.
So early in 2019 – I felt weird. Running didn’t feel good. Something was out of whack. So I sucked it up and went to the DOC. Found out I was anemic – popped some Iron pills just in time to do CUT112 — and I felt the difference.
After the CUT things got weird again.
In June I was hit by some weird stomach stuff. A lot of Doctor appts, a lot of tests, no real answers. Even a colonoscopy. Everything said I was fine. But I couldn’t run. I did Devils path with some of the worst pain I’ve ever felt. I was scared how Italy would go… and it bothered me there. But not as bad. — I’m still figuring it out, and still have my bad days, but I’ve learned to control it.
Otherwise though – I love hills now. I love climbs. I don’t die every time.
My energy is good – and most runs feel good.
In these adventures and mountain miles. I’ve spent a lot of time figuring out what I’m doing with my life. Surrounded by friends with real lives and family. And here I am – just all over the place.
I don’t share my life with one person. I share it with many. And I’m learning that that’s ok?
I’ve lived my whole life thinking I had to have a boyfriend. I had to get married. Because that’s what people do. You live to fall in love.
I fell in love once. Since that ended I’ve fallen in love everyday. With people, with places. Nothing has stole my heart like the Adirondacks did this year.
Don’t get me wrong – I want to be with one person some day.
But for now I’m content.
It’s hard experiencing the best days of your life – knowing they will end. The love you feel in this moment will fade. But the memories last forever. You’ll miss the people the you spent these unlimited hours with. Forever connected by the experience of completing something you didn’t think you’d complete.
Managing to laugh at each other through sleep deprivation and energy depletion. To get stronger as the days and miles add up. Experiencing true exhaustion and hallucinations. Sleeping 10 minutes and it feeling like 2 hours.
No feelings quite like what you feel after completing 51 hours of the CUT112. Or 10 hours traveling through the heart of the Adirondacks. Taking steps and seeing things only the Birds, Moose, and Bears see. OR 75 Miles exposed traversing trails of the Dolomites, and walking with Italian cows. Waking up every morning to people you vaguely knew, but now have become family. And everyday trekking above the clouds.
To sum things up. I’m lucky. Lucky to have best friends and adventure partners. Lucky to have Strat and Mertsock – making life less lonely, and up for everyday adventures. Matt and Adam – however far away they are, they’re stuck with me for life. Rochester Running Co – Giving me opportunities to design as well as help lead adventures. Red Newt Racing and Mountain Peak Fitness – Always look forward to races and team gatherings. They continue to welcome me, support me, and include me in awesome adventures. #Trailsroc – Will always be where it started. Where I met my first training partners, my first trail races, and supported me in my first 100.
Here’s to more new adventures. More best days. And the ever expanding adventure family.
Miles Ran: 1817 miles
Miles Raced: 401.7 (11 Races)
Mountains climbed: 85 Peaks
Whats coming in 2020?
March: Mount Tamanny 10
— Something got in my head and made me think this was a good idea.
June: CUT112 again
— Even though we finished the entire course last year – It was marked as a DNF, since it was outside the cutoff. I’m going back for a faster attempt.
July/August: Italy — Helping lead the Alta Via 2 trip
— Potentially staying for 2 weeks and leading Alta Via 1 as well.
Beckhorn Prints: Strat and I are starting something.
— Stay tuned. Or check out instagram.