A One-Way Ticket
Last summer I was able to take a road trip from Wisconsin out to California with multiples stops along the way. I have always liked to travel and have been blessed to be able to see many different places. This trip both expanded those opportunities and allowed me to compare lots of different areas within a short time frame. It was a trip I won't soon forget, and it was one of many influential factors in driving my decisions about the future.
When I started ultrarunning as a grad student back in 2010, I had little knowledge of the sport and all of its offerings. It didn't take long for me to fall in love with the experiences I had in training and racing, as well as the community surrounding the sport. As I began to dive into the sport and focus on its many facets--from training and racing, to coaching myself and others, and to nutrition--it became obvious that there was a whole lot to learn and try out.
As I have increasingly invested my time, energy, and passion into the sport of ultrarunning, it has become increasingly difficult to balance everything in my life. I have become quite good at time management and balancing stress regardless of its source and whether it is perceived as "good stress" or "negative stress." With that said, there is definitely a point at which you need to pick where to focus your energies in a reasonable manner, so as not to burn out. After all, even too much of a good thing can be detrimental to your health.
After this school year, I have decided to step away from teaching full-time so that I can focus more of my energy on training, racing and coaching, as well as various other opportunities within the running and nutrition community.
With this decision comes a significant change in location: I will be moving to Davis, California. It is here where I feel that I will be able to maximize my ability to train specfically for a wider range of race environments, as well as grow my coaching business.
The hardest part about a decision like this is the fact that there was no inherent disatisfaction with my current job and lifestyle. Rather, I reached a pinnacle from which I needed to step back, scaling down the number of passions I've been pursuing in order to maximize my abilities.
It was definitely the hardest decision I have had to make in life, but one I am very confident is the right one. I look forward to the opportunities and exciting experiences that await.