I CAN'T SAY HOW PROUD I AM OF ALL THE RUGGED RUNNERS (posted on here or not), FOR THEIR HARD WORK, DEDICATION, AND ACHIEVEMENTS OVER THE LAST YEAR (2014). Although their are many inspirational, motivational, and outstanding feats for the 2014 year, I'd like to highlight one of the greatest success stories that includes 3 Rugged Runners. Maggie Gueterl, Sky Canavas, and Yoshiko Jo. These incredible women set out to accomplish one goal. "How many miles can I achieve in a 24 hour period." For Yoshiko, it would be her second attempt at that distance, and her personal best would be run at 118 miles for the 24 hour period. As if that wasn't enough, Yoshiko earned 2nd place on her countries (Asia's) ALL TIME LIST!!! Maggie would try again also, this time knocking out 142 miles from her previous best of 110! This would be a new adventure for Sky...for the first time ever she would run down 136 miles in the 24 hour time limit and both Sky and Maggie would find themselves on the TOP TEN AMERICAN ALL TIME LIST and qualifying for the WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP 24 HOUR TEAM!!! And the women would go 1,2,3 (Maggie, Sky, Yoshiko) at the NJ 24 hour event. Moving on... Rugged Running athletes from all over find gain within themselves. Despite all the enriching stories that could be told, here are just SOME of their peak achievements and a few stories. Jacqueline Choi- 1st sub 24 100 miler Rebecca Schaefer- Survived a double race weekend JFK 50 mile and Philly marathon. Nearly PR'd in the 50 mile (although the course was long). Jose Quintanilla- Getting faster and injury free. Jenny Lo Thorsen- Set Personal Bests in 5k,10k,1/2marathon, marathon ALL BEFORE 5 MONTHS POSTPARTUM, and lost all my baby weight! Jason Crockett- Improved nutrition and training consistently. 3rd place at Cactus Rose 50k and 100k personal best! Mark Thill- Massive Personal Best in 100 mile- 19:33 Tunnel Hill from a previous 24 hour 100 mile. Tricia Maldonando- Ran her first 50k, Mountain Ascent (Mt. Evans), and 50 miler. PR'd in her half marathon by 4.5 minutes and hiked 4 14's (that's mountain over 14,000 feet for you flat landers ;) David Wayne Nichols- Finished Western States 100 mile under 30 hours and achieved the best shape of his running life! Michelle Ottmers- 1st 100k (Bandera), 1st place 50k (Nueces), Rim to Rim to Rim Eric Torgersen- Goal when we started together in 2013 was to qualify for Boston (under 3:30 for us old guys). Ran 3:29:25 in the fall. You told me there was a lot more in the tank! So goal with you for 2014 was to PR at every distance.10k lowered by 2:05 to 41:28.1/2 Marathon lowered by 4:40 to 1:35:04.Marathon lowered by 5:25 to 3:24:00 Courtney Erin Crespin- 2014 ended up going a lot differently than originally planned. After a really rough summer and two DNF's in Leadville due to some nutritional issues at higher altitude, I was determined to "make it right". I bounced back to run a 33 minute course PR a few weeks later at Mt. Werner 50k on an extremely hot day with a summer cold to boot. It also included my worst and 2nd most damaging trail spill to date, which ended up keeping me out of running for a few weeks after. It was totally worth it, and that race was easily my proudest moment of racing in 2014. In the fall, I tried my hand in some shorter distance trail races and an ascent race. All things that I really never pictured myself doing or being interested in. To my surprise, I actually did alright! I ran a 25k PR on a technical and challenging course at altitude, and took 2nd in my age group. I took 3rd female in the ascent race. Then there was the 4 mile race that was the day before the 25k. I had NO idea what I was doing or how people even run 4 mile trail races.. but I decided to run scared, and that seemed to work! I ended up placing 2nd in my AG there as well. While my summer didn't quite go according to plan... it led me to a great accomplishment at Mt. Werner 50k, and ultimately led me to try new distances and races later on. I'm so grateful for the encouragement, guidance and support of Michele. She is such a great example of a strong and determined athlete, and she inspires me to "shake it off" and get back out there even when things may not go according to plan. Melinda Coen- Ran almost a 3 hour 100 mile personal best on the trail! Justine Helminiak- Finished a 100 miler, PR'd in the 100k at the 100 mile!! Went on to PR in the 5k, 10k, and 50k thereafter! Rob Goyen- Ran 104 miles unsupported at Snow Drop 55 hour. Laura Hildebrand- 6th in her age group at Texas Trail Championships. Donna Shackelford- Completed her longest run ever at 7 miles! Nicci Corradino- Pr'd in her marathon by 22 minutes. Shelly Rollinson- Completed her first race ever, "go big or go home".. The Leadville Marathon as well as the Sliver Rush 50! Susan Bell- 100 miles at Snow Drop 55. Belmont Boswell- Became stronger on hills, with balance, and avoiding injury. Yoshiko Jo- Ran 116 miles in 1st attempt at 24 hour. Won it, and set a new course record. Went on to run 118 miles at the next attempt, making the all time list for her country in 2nd place (Asia). She placed 3rd at the AG Trail race and feels more leaner, fit and mentally stronger! Sky Canavas- Ran a 50 miler to qualify for the elite field at TNF San Francisco. Won the TGNY 100 miler in 19:06. Finished 2nd at the Vermont 100k in 11:54. Ran the 24 hour distance for the first time knocking out 136 miles to Qualify for the U.S. World Championship 24 hour team and making the all time top 10 list at that time! Maggie Guterl- Set a personal best in the 24 hour event running 142 miles, qualifying for the U.S. World Championship 24 hour team and making the top 10 all time list! Set personal records in 100 mile trail (18:34), 50 mile trail (7:38), 50k (3:58), marathon (3:08) which came with a double weekend!, and PR'd in the 5k at the marathon and PR'd in the 100k at the 100mile!
AGAIN, I CANNOT BE MORE PROUD OF ALL OF YOU RUGGED RUNNERS!!! THEIR IS NO ACHIEVEMENT BIG OR SMALL THAT GOES UNNOTICED AND HOPE TO HELP YOU REACH WHATEVER THOSE GOALS MAYBE IN 2015!!! ~ MICHELE