How Not to Be a Head Case at Your Big-City Race

You’ve spent your training runs loping along tree-lined trails or quiet back roads with your herd. But one day, you find yourself on a city street inside an immense crowd of unfamiliar beasts. Music blares, crowds roar, and you have to fight your way through a veritable obstacle course to reach your destination. Add the pressure to perform and months (if not years) of preparation and expectation, and you have the perfect description of a big-city race—and a potential recipe for a major mental meltdown. Read the full article for Runner’s World.

Inspirational Team Hoyt Proves Anything Is Possible

In the past four decades, Dick Hoyt and his son, Rick, who has cerebral palsy, have together completed six Ironman triathlons, more than 70 marathons and a 45-day run and bike across the U.S. without a single day of rest. Dick, 74, a motivational speaker and Holland, Mass. resident, is usually quick with a tale and a joke in his thick Boston brogue. But ask the former Air National Guard lieutenant colonel the most difficult thing he’s ever done, and he’s briefly rendered speechless. Read the full story on (or download a pdf).

Wins and Losses

I usually post links to my work on this site and let them speak for themselves. This time feels different.

Since I ran the Boston Marathon as well, this article was very personal for me. I can’t share it without expressing tremendous gratitude to everyone who helped me put it together. My editors had the faith to assign me a topic a bit outside my typical realm. The experts took my calls and offered their insights on extremely short notice. And of course, the runners I interviewed trusted me with their deep and sometimes uncomfortable thoughts—a confidence I don’t take lightly. I sincerely hope I did right by them all.

As you’ll know if you read the contributors page of the print issue (or if you know me as a runner and not just a writer)—unlike most of the people I spoke with for this article, I finished Boston but did not have a good race. In part, I blame a developing injury that has since worsened. I haven’t run for almost a month now—a particularly difficult month to spend sidelined.

But having this chance to help tell the story of Boston reminded me of what writing has in common with running, and why both remain so important to me. At times, you struggle and hurt and cry, and you don’t think you can finish. In the end, though, you do. And it is redemptive.

Here’s the full article, in Runner’s World. Thank you for reading.

(Also, I can’t share this without thanking my amazing husband Matt—who always believes I can finish and helps me do it, whether it’s mile 22 or somewhere around 4 a.m. on deadline.)