The Blonde Runs

Colorado lovin'

Leave a comment

…Limbo in Minnesota


Since returning to the States, Nick and I have spent the last couple of months in Minnesota with his family.  It’s been a transition time for us in order to get our bearings, sort out some life things, make some adult decisions, and generally to just be in a state of limbo before moving back to Colorado (as we didn’t really need to rush back). You can scroll to the bottom for a bit more insight into how we feel about being back.  This should be a proper post at some point.

In the time that we’ve spent here, we’ve done everything and nothing.

We reconnected with our beloved dog, Chase.



I ran some 5k’s and placed 2nd female in both, albeit no PR (I was WAY off on that!).



We saw beautiful sunsets.




We spent time on the lake(s) via boat, jetski, and SUP.







We made plenty of bonfires.


I turned 34.


We celebrated our 1st anniversary in Chicago.

View More:



IMG_1697We celebrated our freedom in one of the most patriotic places in the US that I know.



And we bought one of the most stereotypical Colorado vehicles that we possibly could.


But between all of those photo opportunities, we have been overwhelmed with transitioning back to the States.  In a word, it’s been hard.  We mourn for the simple life we had in Australia.  We desperately refuse to fall back into the same patterns, the same routines, because we have changed, in some ways.  And we are holding on tightly to the epiphanies we had while away, the dreams that came into focus, our hopes that have renewed life. We’ve been stressed with the decisions we’ve had to make thus far, and pray that those we’ve made are right for us in this moment.  And now we are nervous for yet another transition as we return to Colorado this weekend.  I know it will go better and more smoothly than I have conjured up in my head; afterall, we’ll finally be amongst the mountains again.  And through all of our transitions (past, present, and future) I can be confident that “home” is really wherever Nick is, and he’s the most important thing to me.



…One journey’s end


Coming home is a tricky thing.

We are sorting through a lot of feelings and emotions as we leave behind our life in Australia and transition to creating a new normal in the US.

I’m having a hard time properly describing this past AMAZING year in another country; equally struggling to articulate what it feels like to be back “home.”

Being patient as I work through all of this. Knowing it will get easier. Knowing I will never be the same person.



…2013 highlights

2013 was a big year for me, not only in the running world, but personally as well.  Sure there were some major disappointments to learn from, but overall, I had a full, rich year with new challenges and big leaps.  I certainly stepped out of my running comfort zone, and in doing so, have met some amazing people and opened myself up to untapped opportunities.  Below are some of the highlights of the year; moments that will be remembered forever.


Sharin’ O the Green 5k (2nd AG)



Golden Gate Headlands Trail Marathon (1st)



My first 50k-Greenland Trail



Lake City/Handies Peak





Hired a coach and ran with one of his groups over the Continental Divide



Started my 2nd year with the Oiselle running team


Bellingham/Victoria with this sweet gal

Screen shot 2013-12-27 at 9.10.35 AM

Golden Beaver Trail 1/2 Marathon (blonde nav. was tricky and I got lost;
but the knee deep water crossing was a part of the actual course)



Ragnar CO-Ultra team (1st in all women/3rd overall)

Tears at the Finish

XTerra Trail 1/2 Marathon (where I met Heidi!)



Oiselle Photo Shoot


Aspen & Crested Butte trip with Nick



Oiselle Meet-up for PAC12 XC

(Bret, Shanna, me, Laura)



Club XC Nationals-Bend, Oregon

Screen shot 2013-12-24 at 7.53.26 AM

Nick and my engagement announcement

Processed with VSCOcam



…a 2012 wrap up in pictures (mostly)

My little running world has definitely been full of ups and downs in 2012.  Each has been a memorable learning experience and I know they will propel me toward my next goals.

Here is a photo-doc of 2012 with only a smattering of words.

Boston Marathon-April

While this 2nd running of Boston was less than thrilling, due to the heat wave (~90 degrees), I endured and finished with a PW.


Leadville Heavy Half-June

I had always wanted to run in the Leadville Series, so I hit the trails/mountains during the summer and geared up for the Leadville Heavy Half (15.4 miles) with my friend Danielle.  The twist, I would run another half marathon the next day.


Steamboat Springs Half-July

The day after running Leadville, I drove to Steamboat Springs for another half with my friend Erika.  I was really excited to attempt back-to-back halves, but I crashed and burned on this 2nd race.  The last 5 miles were painful.  I am happy with my attempt but would train differently next time.


Great Urban Race-August

The boy’s brother came into town and wanted to run the Great Urban Race in Denver.  It’s a mix of running, puzzles, and challenges.  Surprisingly, we landed a 6th place finish!


Redline Turkey Day 10k-November

All that running in 2012, coupled with a late 2011 marathon caused some scar tissue in my left hamstring. After a few rounds of PT in September, along with some build up in October/November, I felt ready to get back out for a race. This first race as a Oiselle ambassador was run with Erika and my brother on a cold, windy, Thanksgiving morning.  I loved getting out there!



This year, I was also able to run/hike some 14ers this past summer.  Some old, some new.

Grays and Torreys-May



Mt. Elbert-June


Mt. Sneffels-August



I met some fabulous, inspirational people.

Scott Jurek

Courtney C


Bridger (my new nephew)-Juliet (my niece)



I’ve done a little bit of travel.







Telluride, CO-August and September (2 trips)


Minnesota-March and December (2 trips)




And of course, my proudest accomplishment was being accepted as a Oiselle ambassador-September

Oiselle Team Badge


To finalize 2012, I have one more race to run.  Tonight, a local Resolution 5k at 6pm.  It’s the best way I know to end a year and start a new one; with a run.  Nothing amazing, just something fun, light, and a reminder of why I do what I do.  My love for running has carried me for over 20 years.  It has brought about new distances I never knew I’d attempt, new friends I never knew I’d make, to new places I never knew I’d travel.  Running helps define me.

I am a runner.  



…with a fritzy Garmin

I’m pretty sure that my Garmin 305 is about to die. It’s showing signs that it’s loosing the will to live. Just a few weeks ago I had written a wonderful and heartfelt epitaph for this priceless accessory that I won’t and can’t run without. That one piece of running equipment that I feel naked without.

A few weeks ago, Garmin decided that it didn’t want to turn on. This, after a night of sleeping on the dock. Well, then. I replaced it and went for my run with the BFF. Upon returning, it still wouldn’t turn on, even with all the tricks of hitting “mode” and “reset” at the same time. Awesome, I thought. Just getting into marathon training and Garmin dies. Great timing. I seem to have that.

But then, low and behold, a day or so later, it decides to turn on, work like a charm, and act as though nothing ever happened. Let by-gones, be by-gones.

But I was skeptical.

Then a couple of weeks passed. And, although I mostly forgot about that incident, it was still in the back of my mind. Now, in the forefront.

See, I was running my speed workout last night. 5×800’s. Or so I hoped. The rain started to pour. A somewhat abnormal occurance for dry Colorado, since we are considered the high desert (but hey, I get mountains and 300+ days of sunshine, and I do love my sunglasses). I was completely fine with playing it easy and doing my workout on the dreadmill. Something I usually steer clear of. But it’s my new shwanky gym that’s open 24 hours and it’s only a few steps from my new apartment. So, why not? Just this once.

But apparently when it rains, everyone thinks they are workout whores at 6:40 pm, so naturally every machine was being used. Fine. I went back upstairs and got ready to run outside. This is actually a process. What to wear? A jacket or long sleeves? Shorts or capris? What to do with my hair? Should I wear a hat? And off I went in the downpour. Not quite, but comparitively…

I ran my 2 mile warm up (which wasn’t so warm) and started my 800’s. After my 2nd 800, my watch dies. Or, at least stopped responding to any button I touch. The main “real time” screen is showing, but I can’t get it to rotate through any others, or even turn off. So, I run a 3rd 800 back, only guessing the distance and timing and pace. But now it’s dark and I’m mostly upset about the watch. I decide that surely the treadmills must be open now. I’ll go down to the gym to finish the final 2 800’s and my cooldown. Nope. Everyone is still working out. Interesting since I’ve never seen it packed like this. Or used for that matter.

It hasn’t been the greatest of days anyway, starting at 7am, so I decide to take a shower, eat, and just go to bed. I put Garmin on the dock, just to see what would happen the next day.

This morning, I woke up early for an easy 3 miler. I plan on the dreadmill. But once again, Garmin surprises me. Revived, I take it on the morning run and it works like a dream. After the run, it becomes “screen stuck” again. I leave it on the dock.

This afternoon, I plan a 7 miler, and hope beyond hope that it works. It does! Yet now, with the same issues as earlier. But in addition, it is now randomly turning on and off, even as I type this. It’s like it knows…

I suppose that by now, Garmin has run its course. I have had it for 4 years. I need to prepare for the worst. But, the thought of buying a new, expensive watch right now, is a little daunting. After playing with the boy’s new Nike GPS watch, I’m not sure it does everything I want it to. So, I’m sure I’d get another Garmin.

Which sports watch do you use? Would you recommend it?