10 Reasons To Run A Marathon! By Val Pate

written by Val Pate ROTY 2014

She is also one of the coaches and a pretty bad ass lady.


1.        It will change your life.   Seriously – there’s nothing like setting a stretch goal, and then doing whatever it takes to complete it, especially when you do it alongside a group of friends

2.       You will learn that the experience is as much about the journey as it is about the destination.  Showing up every week, in all kinds of weather, running mile after mile at a conversational pace with an awesome group of people – I promise you, you will look forward to it!  970570_10151448699138531_316076060_n

3.       It’s a great way to bridge the time gap between the depths of winter, and the beginning of spring – you start out running and its cold….and rainy…and then the weather starts to improve, and then its SPRING, and you start to see the FLOWERS!  And at some point, you can wear SHORTS!!!

4.       There’s many ways to be healthy – and different things work for different people – but this training taught me once and for all to stop worrying about how my body looks, and start focusing on what it can do.

5.       You will become an expert in self-care.  Marathon training taught me to take care of myself – I knew that I was asking my body to do something big, so I developed some very healthy habits for the sole purpose of my success on my long runs.

6.       You will learn that some of your training days will be great, and some of them will absolutely suck.   I still remember my suckiest run during marathon training, and I remember what Coach Pamela told me: “now you know you can have a sucky run and that you will not die”.  I’m no longer scared of having a bad day.  It’s a metaphor…trust me.

7.       If you have little kids, you will be their idol.  If you have older kids, you will develop a certain amount of “street cred” with them.   There’s nothing like responding to their whininess with, “and just how many miles did YOU run, today”?    I recently had to play my “marathon card” as a response to a crisis of confidence in my house.   I provided a reminder that just because you’re doing something that’s hard, or that not many people have done, it doesn’t mean you can’t do it.  That’s a life lesson for all of us.

8.       You will learn not to get intimidated by overwhelming tasks.   At first glance, the marathon training plan looks huge and complex.  But if you take it one week at a time (or even one mile at a time if you need to) all of a sudden you’ll realize that you are DOING it.  For me, this was one of the biggest life lessons I gained from marathon training.

9.       Cake.  I would be remiss if I didn’t mention cake.   It tastes even better than you thought it could, along with anything else you might consume after running 15 miles.

10.   Seriously, it will change your life.  Everything becomes a metaphor – the uphills, the downhills, the goals, getting to the starting line, getting to the finish line, supporting your friends, letting them support you.   Its all here – I promise.


Our marathon training starts in a couple weeks. It’s awesome. I promise.


Well, I know a lot about this one; Her dog is Abby, and she has another one too, who I can’t remember. Her hair dresser is Dean. Her husband’s name is Funky, or Bruce…maybe it’s Funky Bruce. And everyone knows her. She was not a runner when she came to Running Evolution, and I thought she hated me…she might still.

15825992_10210281802554366_1581451512129192224_n She also ran 2016 miles in 2016 with the help of another ROTY, Val. Her hair always looks good. I did get a little miffed when I found out her half marathon time was a little too close to my PR. She is kind, generous, inspirational and an amazing supporter.  12112276_10206709545330168_3819586019678638540_n

Kathy Bowen, I am so so so happy to have you part of Running Evoution, and very happy to have you be the ROTY!



I haven’t had this much attention on my boobs since I was a freshman in college. Let me explain…. When I packed on my freshman 15, it went right to my boobs.  When I came back to my home town, word got around that I got a boob job. To be fair, it was Orange County, and I was very blond.

Fast forward to 23 years later, in early October,  going to the OB for my annual fun day with a side of speculum. The doc let out a “OH!” (code for I found a lump). No big deal, I have had one before, those mammogram places have chocolate! I am good.

Mammogram came back with not 1, but 2 suspicious “distortions” which needed 2 biopsies. I freak out, cry, plan my funeral and come back to my senses. First biopsy was awful! It was loud, and I had to stand up, while  they put a needle in my boob. I know, TMI. Sorry. But I did figure out that I want “Come Up To The House” by Tom Waits at my funeral.

So, fast forward past months, 15 mamograms, MRI’s andbbbra2 3 more biopsies, where they kept missing the spots, and then had to surgically open up my fun bag to pull out what ever was in there.

It’s been a long stressful few months, and I haven’t been a good friend, coach or family person. But here is the kicker, everybody, and I mean EVERYBODY, has been so so so awesome and wonderful. So, this is just a thank you letter to you for being so awesome, even if you had no idea, you were still there. I hated telling people, it’s such a downer, and I had no answers. No books are written on the breast limbo waiting game.

The last test results just came back as benign, and I thought they said, beignets….both words I love and they are both so so sweet.