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I was a late bloomer to this running craziness.  One of my coworkers would always talk to me about running in the hopes that I would get into it.  Nope.  I was not interested because I could not run even one mile.

I began running in the summer of 2005.  I remember walking along the lakefront and I saw this older man running and I told myself “Well, if he can do it, so can I”.  I immediately signed up with CARA for their Beginner’s Program.  The goal was to run for 30 minutes.  I only made it to about 29 minutes.  Still, it was an accomplishment for me.

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My first race was a 5K in November.  I finished in 39:48.  Not the best time but I was happy for it being my first race ever.  The rest is history.  To date I’ve completed many races with various distances from a 5K to an ultramarathon.  In 2012, I completed my first relay race (Ragnar Relay Chicago).  I had a blast!

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I am also a second grade teacher.  Prior to teaching I was a marketing manager for a nonprofit organization.  Every day brings smiles from my kids.  Throughout the day they learn something from me but I learn much more from them.

I run because I can.  I run because I enjoy that feeling of accomplishment whether it is a short or long run.  I run because it is my “me” time.

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3 comments on “About Me”

  1. I’m the director of 3100 RUN AND BECOME, a feature-length doc on the world’s longest race (the Self-Transcendence 3100 Miler – that’s the one where people run 60 miles a day for 52 days around a 1/2 mile block in NYC). But the film is so much more than that. The film interweaves narratives of a Navajo ultramarathoner, a Kalahari Bushman and a Japanese Marathon Monk.

    I’d love to invite you to our opening on 9/21 at 6 pm at the Gene Siskel. Please let me know at rawals@mac.com

    Here’s the trailer:

    We were featured on the Rich Roll podcast, Trail Runner Mag and many others. We started our theatrical tour in Santa Fe, which Billy Mills hosted. He said “Whether you’re a runner or someone looking to transform your life, inspiration can be found if you have the courage to look within. A film like 3100: Run and Become is the perfect starting point.”

    We’ve had incredible panels all over the country with Tegla Loroupe, Paul Tergat, Kate Grace (800 m Olympian), ultra-champions Tim Olson, Hillary Allen, Keely Henninger and Cat Bradley too. Brooks CEO Jim Weber sent his employees to our Seattle Screening. Nike’s Global Running Team hosted a screening while we had our Portland engagement. We started in the outdoor/mountain towns. Chicago is our first major city.

    We open at the Gene Siskel Film Center downtown this Friday 9/27 til Thursday 9/27. We then have a special day-before-the-marathon screening on October 7th at the Gene Siskel at 1 pm. But again our opening night is 9/21 at 6. We’d love to have you there.

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