Don’t overthink things.

Don't overthink things. Be in the moment!

Don’t overthink things. Be in the moment!

In the past few weeks since the 100K World Champs, Conor and I have gotten a ton of messages from people trying to break down my race, what I did wrong, and how I shouldn’t have done this or that. One person even broke it down by kcals per minute and hour, the biochemistry of everything I consumed, and how I need to pace it. I was rolling out of bed from a nap when I read this message, so my eyes glazed over at the numbers and very long, detailed message! With a complex day job in Research, the last thing I want to be bombarded by is a bunch of numbers and highly cerebral thought! 

Don't overthink it dude. Have a beer!

Take a chill pill dude. Have a beer!

I think the beauty of what I did is that I didn’t overthink it. I went into the race without putting any barriers on myself and what I’m capable of, overthinking pace/splits, and I most definitely did not want to over-tweak the somewhat successful (and minimal) approach I had at my first 100K at Mad City. [Read more…]

100K World Champion and Team Champions!


Proud to be part of this wonderful Team- we're World Champions!!!

Proud to be part of this wonderful Team- we’re World Champions!!!

This past week and weekend was like a fairtale! In only my 3rd completed ultra (and 2nd 100K), I won the IAAF/IAU 100K World Championship in Winschoten, Netherlands in 7:08:35 (6:53 per mile for 62.12 miles!), while helping Team USA women win the team gold!!! It was the 4th fastest 100K ever (see here). It’s a new chapter in my running career- the best is yet to come!

I’ve felt blessed my body has finally been letting me push it all out the past few months! It’s been a long road getting my mojo back, since getting ill and collapsing at Comrades last year and hurting my hammy last July. This was the first time in a while I’ve had a proper buildup towards a longterm goal. I’ve trained mostly uninterrupted since late May, which included taking a month off from my day job in July to work for Team USA at the Pan Am Games. Over the past 3 1/2 years, I’ve struggled with so many injuries, illness, and lots and lots of tears, the desire to quit, doubts, blood (crazy dog bite in June?!), diarrhea, puking… I needed redemption for the rollercoaster I’ve been on! This performance means a whole lot to me! Thank you to those who have continued to believe in me and encouraged me to take a leap of faith into the ultra world.

Clearly the marathon (and even back-to-back marathons!) wasn’t enough to show my true talent. It felt so right when I ran Mad City back in April– as if my body was meant to move at that pace, for that long. As I mentioned in the pre-race press conference, I feel like I’m born to do this… like it’s my calling in life! It’s that sort of conviction that fueled me to run fearlessly from the gun in my first World Championship. [Read more…]

20th marathon win/12th State win at Leading Ladies in SD!

Hawi's first extended road trip!

Hawi’s first extended road trip!

Many thanks to this guy for driving and taking care of us!

Many thanks to this guy for driving and taking care of us!

This past weekend, we made a mini vacation up to the Leading Ladies Marathon in Spearfish, SD. Why Leading Ladies? I needed a marathon 4-5 weeks before the 100K World Champs, preferably within driving distance. I could test out my Team USA uniform (although I’ll likely wear the briefs and airborne top for Worlds). I had Leading Ladies on my Excel spreadsheet as a possibility for getting a win in South Dakota. Between the feedback from my friends and the positive comments for the race on, I was super pumped up to see a new part of the country and meet all my objectives! 

Me with the beautiful (inside and out!) Leading Ladies RD, Elaine Doll-Dunn!

Me with the beautiful (inside and out!) Leading Ladies RD, Elaine Doll-Dunn!

2015-08-16 13.39.31 2015-08-16 13.39.41Ok, so I was super stoked to run a womens-only marathon in a beautiful part of the country… and even more stoked when I got a very nice and welcoming email back from the race director, Elaine Doll-Dunn (click her link to read about this brilliant woman!). I did a little bit of research about ~Spearfish, the race, sightseeing, and Elaine herself… but man, I clearly didn’t do enough research on Elaine! Upon arriving in Spearfish and meeting Elaine, I learned that:

  • She has 7 children, 20 grandchildren, and 8 great-grandchildren
  • She’s 77 years YOUNG and started running in her 40’s after having kids
  • She’s run 125 marathons, has a PR in the 3:40’s, and has 47,700 lifetime miles on her legs!
  • The woman both looks and feels freakin’ great for her age
  • She started Leading Ladies to bring women together in her special hometown and experience the beauty of the Spearfish Canyon

It gets even better if you click her website and read about her! I wanna be like Elaine when I grow up- she is the heart of Leading Ladies!!! [Read more…]

There are no mountains out our front door.

While I’m working on a blog about my latest race, check out the good catch by my friend Paul in the latest issue of Running Times:


To give some context, the May/June issue did a feature on ultra running and talked about the top ultra runners. Ironically, we got the issue in the mail the day before I ran the 100K Road US Championship, my domestic ultra debut. Conor reminded me that it was my opportunity to have a breakout performance! The next day I created history, running the fastest 100K on American soil, broke Ann Trason’s 26 year National Championship Record, and ran the fastest time in the World since 2008.

The article focused mainly on trail ultra running and the top trail ultra runners. It was basically encouraging newbies to look into running trail ultras. I commented, having just run my first 100K on the roads, that people should consider road/track ultras too. Why? [Read more…]

2015 Pan American Games update

teamusaTo update everyone– I’ve been in Toronto for almost 3 weeks now, serving as an Athlete Services Coordinator (ASC) with Team USA for the 2015 Pan American Games. We have 1 more week to go! I haven’t had time to post a blog until now, and for good reason… we’ve been working our butts off! It’s been “Go” since July 1st when we arrived. Every day has had it’s own unique challenges. As hard as we’ve worked, it’s been an amazing experience. I’ve been trying to post daily pics/updates on social media (Twitter/Instagram/Facebook), so you can follow my daily journey there. [Read more…]