Running for Anna

On December 12, 2010 our family was devastated by the loss of my niece, Anna Rogotzke, on her fourth birthday, to a rare cancer called Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma. On December 4, 2011, I ran in the California International Marathon to raise money for the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative, a leader in the fight against sarcomas. This blog is created to update those interested in my journey and progress as I train for this event and events thereafter.

....And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3)

Friday, November 9, 2012

7 Months Ago.....

...was my last post!  That's pathetic.  While I have been keeping up on reading all of the blogs I follow, I just haven't been very good at posting or commenting.  I also started wondering why I was blogging at all.  Who cares?  It was getting stressful just keeping up with my one or two posts per month.  But, a few days ago, I went back and read some of the posts I had written and remembered that the main reason for doing this was to have a journal for myself.  Yes, I wanted to have something to keep me accountable to running, but I realize as I look back that it became so much more.  It's a place where I could honor people or remember special days or serve as a reminder later on about those life experiences that sometimes get forgotten.  And, of course, as the title indicates, it is a place to always remember Anna, my niece who was taken from us way too soon.  So, I'm back.  I'll still talk about running, but I'll also write about other things.... the things that mean the most to me so I don't take them for granted.  It doesn't matter if anyone reads or nobody reads ...  this is for me.  

Where do I begin?  When I left off last, I was about to run a 1/2 marathon.  My goal was 2:15.  My time?  2:16:00.  I would have taken 2:15:59.  Oh well!  I don't do well in temps above 60 degrees and, by the end, it was well over 70.  I crossed the half-way point at 1:06 and I thought I was well on my way to reaching my goal, but the "heat" (it was hot for that time of year) got to me in the end. 

In May, my son, my husband, and I ran a 10k on Memorial Day to raise money for disabled veterans.  It was awesome to participate in this even with my family, and we just had fun.  Then.....

I kind of fell out of love with running for awhile.  I was just too hard on myself for not being faster.  My goal was never to be the fastest runner, but my competitive side does come through occasionally, and it was causing me grief.  The weather just kept getting hotter and I kept getting slower.  I kept hearing about people who just started running and were already much faster than I.  An article come out in "Runner's World" about that time (which was perfect!).  The author wrote about taking the summers off because he just didn't enjoy running in the summer.  He hiked, kayaked, biked, etc., instead.  When he started running again in the fall, he felt energized and running wasn't boring or hard anymore.  So, that's what I did!  I took the summer off.  I worked out to Jilian, went hiking, and just generally participated in activities that I normally don't get to do. 

I started running again about the end of August, and it feels GREAT!  I wear my Garmin (to track mileage), but don't look at it for pace or time.  Running is to keep me healthy, somewhat in shape, and provide an outlet for the stress in my life...that's it.  There's nothing like starting out a day with a cool morning's run.  Not only that, but a few weeks ago, my son said he wanted to train for a 1/2 marathon!  I was a little shocked, to be honest, but very excited to impart all of my "wisdom" and "knowledge" to my 17-year-old.  We went and had him fitted for some shoes, and he's off and running (literally).  The only problem???  He wants me to run with him, and there's no way on this earth I'd be able to get him out of bed at 4:30 a.m. (my usual run time).  So, I made the EXTREME sacrifice of switching my running schedule to run with him after work/school.   Ugh!  At first, I hated this.  Too much traffic, too hot, and I'm not exactly motivated after a day at work to get my running clothes on and head out the door again.  But, the more we got into a routine, and the more the temps dropped, the better it got.  Now, I look forward to that time with my son, and I'm grateful that he actually still wants to do something with me.  It's something we can do together with the same goal in mind.  That goal, incidentally, is this:

in Davis, CA.  I CAN'T WAIT!  It will be so great to cross the finish line of this race with my son beside me (or very far ahead of me ... however it works out). 


  1. I love your attitude about running. and is easy to lose interest, or find that it has another purpose than what you planned. Wearing the garmin for distance is a great way to eliminate stress.

    You are so blessed to have such a wonderful training partner! I cannot WAIT until my kids are old enough to run that far- and then I PRAY they have the desire and that my body still can.
    Glad to see you are back. :)

  2. Welcome back to blogging! A race with your son will be such a great experience. I know you must be looking forward to it!

  3. So glad your blogging again! You're such a good writer! I loved your last post with the pic of Noah, too :)

  4. Hi Jen! I'm glad to hear from you again. I totally understanding about needing a blogging/running break--I plan to stop blogging altogether in January and while part of me is wistful, I know it's the right decision. But I'll still be reading blogs, so I hope to hear about your race with your son!! Wonderful!!!