It has been a while since I’ve featured a runner in Going the Distance, a blog series to highlight runners of varied backgrounds to inspire, motivate, and help you reach your running goals. Since I launched the series nearly two years ago, I’ve shared stories of runners who think a 10k is the perfect distance to those who take on the challenge of running 100-mile or longer races, and they all have had something special to teach us.
I’ve always said cheese (specifically fondue) brought my friend Gina and I together after the 2009 Pikes Peak Ascent, but something much messier united Laurie Nakauchi and me—litter. I’ll take this as a sign we’re destined for a great friendship, too.
In October I hosted Take Three For Our Trails, a contest to encourage people to pick up at least three pieces of litter while out running, hiking, or playing outside. The challenge is rooted in the belief that every piece of litter we pick up makes a difference, and if someone spots us packing it out, they’ll be motivated to do the same. Laurie submitted several photos of her trashy runs and subsequently was the winner of a $10 REI gift card.
Since Laurie and I share a fondness for clean trails, I wanted to dig a little deeper and learn more about her and her running background. It’s clear she represents all that is good about our sport—passion, camaraderie, and grit—and I’m honored to share her story.
Where do you live and train?
I live in Lakewood, Colorado and mainly train on the trails close to home here in Lakewood, Golden, Boulder, and Evergreen. During the summer I tend to venture higher to the surrounding mountains.
How long have you been running?
I’ve been running for 35 years. I started out running road races (10ks, marathons) but the past 23 years I’ve focused more on ultras and trail races. [Continue Reading]