I first came to running from a process of elimination. I’ve always believed that not playing T-ball or soccer as a child closed a lot of hand-eye coordination sports opportunities for me. That is, this eliminated all team sports as options. So when it came time to pick some extracurriculars in middle school, track and field was all that was left.

Even within track, my options dwindled. I quickly realized that I did not have the fast-twitch fibers for sprinting, the height for jumping, the heft for throwing, or even the stamina for the 1600m. Which left me the 400m and the 800m. Both of which I ran poorly, but with the oblivious bliss of someone who can claim middle school to be the highlight of their public school education. And when I say poorly, I mean: dead. last. every. time.

Fast forward to 2010, I found running again during my year as an AmeriCorps volunteer in Lansing, MI. This time, it was a matter of finding a way to exercise while living on a food-stamps-qualifying salary. That meant no more gym membership, which left me with running shoes and the park across the street. The rest is a familiar story. I finished my first 5k, which led me to eventually do an 8k, then a 10k, and a half marathon. This time, I wasn’t even dead last!

Moving to Boston cemented my appreciation for the sport. Now, it wasn’t just a thing that I did because I couldn’t do something else. Long runs along the Charles River Esplanade, running around the Emerald Necklace, and of course, cheering for the Boston Marathon are some of my favorite memories of living in Boston. Unfortunately, my last race in Massachusetts, a half marathon in July of 2014, put me off of running for almost 3 years, but I’m ready to get back into it now, and I’m glad to document my journey to share with you.