Friday, March 17, 2023

New York, here I come!

Hi! It’s me again. I know I said I was done running marathons - a few times actually - but six weeks on the couch after a major surgery can really change your perspective and make you think about what you still want to accomplish.

Let me catch you up. Since Boston 2019, I haven’t been running a whole lot. I was burnt out, COVID happened, Craig moved in, we adopted Reggie who later became my new running buddy, I quit my job of 11.5 years, started a new job, had an abdominal myomectomy in December 2022, was out of work and on the couch for six weeks which leads me to today…

My current long run is 4 miles. My heart rate is out of control. I have to walk up hills because I lose my breath. I’m heavier than I’ve even been and I’ve sadly been leaving Reggie at home because she’s way too fast for me right now. 

What I’m trying to say is… I have a lot of work to do in the next 8 months!

I had a thought while on the couch that I should sign up for a race so I have something to look forward to and motivate me. Craig thought I meant a half marathon. I did too, actually. Then the New York City Marathon crossed my mind. I always told myself if I had one more marathon left in me, I wanted to run New York. 

The lottery had just opened. I slept on it a few nights and couldn’t stop thinking about it so I applied. I knew that the chance of getting in as a first time lottery entrant was almost impossible but I figured if I got in, it would be fate.

There’s something so special about Frank Sinatra’s New York New York playing as 50,000 runners start their 26.2 mile journey crossing the Verrazano Bridge. Visiting all 5 boroughs. Running down First Avenue. Finishing in Central Park. Walking back to the hotel in the big post-race poncho with a finisher medal around my neck. I thought this would be the perfect comeback race.

Well, the lottery happened and I didn’t get in.

I started browsing through the list of charities and clicked on a few to see what they involved. I’ve never run a race for charity before and I always felt very strongly about not running a race for charity unless it was a cause that I really, truly felt connected to. When I got to the M’s and saw *MEB Foundation* I knew right away that this would be the one.

So why the MEB Foundation?

First of all, if you don’t know who Meb Keflezighi is, go ahead and google him. Maybe even buy one of his books. His story is pretty great. During my time with the Falmouth Road Race, I’ve had the opportunity to meet Meb many times. He has been a big inspiration to me throughout my running career. In fact, one of the first times I met him I was sitting with him at the post-race party and he asked me if I was a runner. I just finished high school and told him I retired. He pulled out an autograph card and signed it “Keep running! -Meb” and to this day it’s in a frame in my living room.

I also became friends with his brother/agent Hawi and he mentored me through grad school as I pursued a career in Sports Management. Why wouldn’t I want to run for the MEB Foundation to support my friend and one of the most influential athletes in this sport?

The MEB Foundation’s mission is to be a collaborator and leader in the areas of youth health, education and fitness. It supports programs and events that:

  • Empower youth and their families to “Maintain Excellent Balance”
  • Provide the tools and resources to lead healthy lifestyles
  • Engage youth in academics, in and out of school hours
  • Provide opportunities for youth to play and learn positive life skills through involvement in sports
  • Engage entire communities in promoting youth health, education and fitness

Meb’s philosophy is “Run to Win” in which he says that winning doesn’t always mean getting first place but getting the best out of yourself. I love that. I know this journey is going to be really hard and a win for me in New York will be finishing with a smile on my face.

I’m honored for the opportunity to run the New York City Marathon with Team MEB. If you would like to support me and donate to the MEB Foundation, visit my fundraising page:


  1. Oh my gosh Jen so great to hear from you and to hear we have been on a similar path. Life has certainly been tough since 2019. My last marathon was also in 2019, I have changed job 2x, kid in college, new puppy and I had 2 surgeries in December 2022……bunionectomy and kidney stone. I just ran my first 2 miles yesterday…..yikes I am out of shape and a bit older than you. Another marathon is not in my future but hoping for at least a half. I sure did have a great sleep last night after my run. Looking forward to following you and giving me inspiration to get back to running. Oh and my son is taking sports management at Xavier. Happy running……you’ve got this.

    1. Aw great to hear from you too! Let's catch up soon <3