Functional medicine wellness coach, trail runner and yoga enthusiast
What is your sport?
Trail running, cycling, yoga, rock climbing, backpacking
Tell me about your athletic history?
I have always enjoyed running, and have done several races and triathlons. I discovered ultra-trail running only recently and did my first 50K this summer, placing in the middle of my age group. I never thought I could do an ultra and now I am hooked. I am also a Functional Medicine Wellness Coach and hope to inspire many people to dream big and go after all their health and wellness ideals.
List your top 5 athletic achievements so far in your life
1/2.Completing two marathons (and cutting 30 minutes off my time with the second one 10 years later with a two-year-old son)
3.Completing an Olympic distance triathlon
4.Completing a 50 K trail race
5.Placing first in my age group for a half marathon on Mount Hood.
Who inspires or has inspired you?
I am inspired by everyday, hard-working women who have to juggle jobs, parenting and other important roles in their community while also making time for their health and well-being.
Why did you want to participate in this Female Athlete Project?
To inspire women in their midlife to dream big and go for it, to show that it’s possible to go after your personal goals even with busy schedules.
Why do you think it is important to keep active as we age?
As a functional medicine wellness coach, I have a solid understanding of the importance of exercise and purpose, passion and pleasure to our health and longevity. There are so many health metrics that improve when we’ve got all of those things in our lives. And when we find a sport that combines purpose, passion and pleasure with the fitness benefits, it’s definitely an added bonus!
What obstacles have you faced over the years trying to stay active in your sport/compete in your sport?
For 25 years I worked in cardiac rehab, 19 of those were in management. I worked a lot of long days and, often times odd schedules. Add to that having a toddler at home and I had to be very determined and deliberate in carving out time to run. I will never forget completing my second Portland marathon and seeing my ex-husband and two-year old son cheering me on. Training for the Portland marathon took dedication and time management. I had to make it important enough to sacrifice other things.
What would you tell the younger version of yourself?
Keep going! Follow your dreams and never give up
What keeps you going?
Knowing that I have been an inspiration for others keeps me going. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I remember that I have accomplished a lot in my life and I’m able to push myself hard. Engaging in the types of sports that I do, I am regularly reminded of my resiliency. I use this as a metaphor for life.
Advice to other women about staying active as we age?
It all starts with your “why”. If you want something bad enough you can make it happen. But you have to know why you want it. There has to be a palpable level of importance in order to persevere through big changes or new lifestyle habits. Find supportive people to cheer you on or join you in your endeavor. Be your best cheerleader and celebrate every step along the way.
Best memories in your sport?
All of the fun training runs with friends. I could say placing in my age group or breaking personal records, but honestly, the camaraderie and fellowship in long distance trail running is what I enjoy most. Second to that is the pure bliss of being in beautiful forests. Every time of year has it’s own beauty and I never get tired of being in nature.
What do you hope you never forget as you grow older?
I hope I never forget that the beauty of life is in the present moment and not in some destination or goal. That growth happens until the day we die. That, though we may slow down physically, we are on a beautiful path of discovery until our final breath.
Anything else you want to say about your experience with this project?
I am so thankful to Katy and this project for capturing this very important transition in my life. The athletic endeavors I have taken on in the past 2 years have mirrored the professional transformations I am also going through. I can’t think of a more pivotal time in my life, aside from having a baby. To have all these beautiful photos capturing this time means so much to me.