Happy New Year from paradise, I mean, San Diego, where there’s year-round good running weather. Beside the spectacular views and ideal temperatures, I felt fortunate to be part of two especially noteworthy runs this week.
On Dec. 29, Katie Visco became the youngest woman to complete a solo run across the United States, just two miles south of where we’re staying. Lloyd and I connected with Katie in June when she ran through Ohio, and I had fun tagging along with her for eight miles on Summit County’s Rt. 303, where we talked about community, writing, dreams, life, running, and more. As Katie neared her “Finish” line (the Pacific Ocean), we realized we’d be able to accept her invitation to complete her final miles with her. Tuesday morning we set out and came upon her small group of family and friends a little more than a mile from her destination. Katie was like Forrest Gump as she led us along the Mission Beach boardwalk, and we cheered her on as she continued alone into the ocean. Katie’s message to people is “follow your passions,” and she emotionally repeated it again at the water’s edge, holding a flag: “You can do anything! You can do anything!” Congratulations Katie on accomplishing one of many dreams I’m sure you’ll achieve!
Here are a couple photos of Katie’s big finish:
On New Year’s Eve day, I got to enjoy my own realization of a run I’ve wanted to do for a few years – a 5K with my parents. Both are active and love to walk, and though they don’t run I’ve often thought it would be fun for them to enter a race. As a huge bonus, 10 other members of my extended family, from my adorable 6-year-old second cousin Ava to her grandpa, my Uncle Ralph, all came out to run or walk the San Diego Downtown YMCA’s Resolution Run. After taking a “Fitness Pledge” together, we started out on the challenging mostly cross-country and trail course in Balboa Park. Lloyd came in 7th of the men and I was 10th woman. Being cheered in by Ava made crossing the line especially sweet. Then we waited at the finish to clap, yell, and take photos as everyone else made their way in. Lloyd and I ran back out to encourage my dad and mom as they speed walked and jogged a little in the last mile. It was one of the most fun times I can remember having together, and made me wish we lived closer so we could get together and play more than once every few years. Way to go Team Schuler!
Finally, I was excited to achieve my own mileage milestone. Seeing how close I was getting to logging 2,300 miles for 2009, this week I added a few extra miles and a second run on New Year’s Eve. Lloyd accompanied me on a gorgeous 4 mile jog along Pacific Beach. With the waves on one side and full moon rising on the other, it made for a pretty romantic evening for us running nerds.
Here’s to being part of more milestones in 2010. Cheers!