Hi Runners! My name is Jen and welcome to the Over the Hill Running website. There is nothing quite like being part of a running community. Over the years my fellow runners have inspired me with their positivity, pushed me beyond limits I thought were impossible, eased the pain of heartache and life transitions with conversation and laughter, and given me a sense of belonging when I had none.
We are that crazy group of people who bond when we run uphill through blizzard conditions together, pee in the bushes together, travel to another state or country together to wake up in the wee hours to run, sweat, sometimes cry and hobble to the finish line and then make plans to do it all over again. And now, we must age together.
It does not matter if you are fast or slow, old or young, have been running for a long time or a short time, or are currently on a break from running altogether. Please feel welcome to stop by this website any time you are looking for a boost. Hopefully, it can help.
How it All Began.
One winter when I was 14-years-old, my dad started taking me to a rec center during our weekends together. He thought it would be fun to run 10 laps around the tiny two-lane track upstairs, which equaled a mile.
At first, I didn’t think I was going to make it. My lungs burned. It took forever to get to the tenth lap. My dad would speed up at the end so he could beat me. It wasn’t fun at all. But every week we did our 10 laps. It got easier on my lungs and we got faster. Finally, I would have beat my dad across the finish line if he didn’t cheat by putting his arm out to hold me back while he sprinted ahead.
My mom was also a runner so I would often go out with her for a 2-3 mile run the following spring. It became part of our lifestyle. Later in high school when I would have a bit too much weekend fun and not feel so well the next morning, my mom would drag my sorry a$$ out of bed and make me go for a run with her as punishment.
Nevertheless, at 17 I got an urge to run my first half-marathon. At 27, I started running marathons. At 37, I ran my one and only ultra–a 50K–and then my body started breaking down. It started with low back pain to the point where I couldn’t stand up straight. Then, a mysterious year-long pain in my abdomen that was like a hernia, only it wasn’t. An MRI showed degenerative disc disease. Runner’s knee came along and then high hamstring tendinopathy, which has been acting up for years now. The days I didn’t run, my body felt great. But I still wanted to run. My new goal became to find a way to run without pain.
After trying physical therapy, chiropractic care, acupuncture, new orthodics, yoga, cross-training, eating a Whole 30 diet, I am starting to get there and figure out to age and run happy at the same time.
Time to Share.
I’m not the kind of runner who wins races or is certified to coach other runners. I’m also not a medical or nutrition expert. I’m just an average runner who knows how to find valid information from various experts.
Despite not being any kind of running expert, I have acquired a fair amount of useful information throughout the years. The time has come to start organizing and sharing info in one place that will keep us running happy and healthy into our 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, and beyond.
Let’s Do This Together.
My hope in creating this website is that is provides a sense of community for us aging runners. I will share information to help us keep running, whether it’s training exercises for common ailments, diet or recipe tips, shoe and watch reviews, or a funny story to help keep things in perspective.
Have a look around and please feel free to share your experiences, ideas, or topics you’d like to see covered.
All the best,
Founder of Over the Hill Running