A Year of Running Recap – Running 13 Half Marathons in 2013 and Failing, Kinda

My life in 2013 was dominated by running.

runeatrepeat la marathon results

I didn’t plan it like this, it just kinda happened on that way. ( I also didn’t plan to be on the Refuel poster, but that was extra cool!)

monica on chocolate milk

My 2013 goal was to run 13 Half Marathons. I knew it is hard to find races in summer months so I went out guns blazin’ to get in a good number of races in the first half of the year. So, I ended up having completed 13 RACES by June.

And I kept going. IMAG6372 (800x450)

But, I didn’t run 13 half marathons this year. Technically I missed that goal.

However, I would like to think I surpassed it since I ran 26 races total –

9 marathons, 12 half marathons one 5k & 10k, a Ragnar relay and a 50K!

new york city marathon course

13.1 Los Angeles

RnR AZ half (1:43:32)

ING Miami half

Surf City Marathon

RnR Pasadena half

RnR NOLA marathon

RnR San Francisco half

Ragnar Relay – SoCal

LA Marathon

OC Marathon (PR 3:36:25)

Born to Run 50K

Laguna Hills Half

RnR San Diego marathon

Pasadena Half Marathon

Shoreline Half Marathon

Xterra Snow Valley 21K

Beach to Beacon 10K

Santa Rosa Marathon

Long Beach Marathon

Runner’s World 5k, 10k and Half

Marine Corps Marathon

New York City Marathon

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

RnR Las Vegas half

Santa to the Sea half

Holiday half

(I am going to update my race recaps page with links for these asap.)

runeatrepeat medal hanger

9 full marathons?!?! <- That ish cray. I only ran 2 last year and they wrecked me.


I credit figuring out my fueling AND the fact that I’ve been running for so long I finally made an effort to learn more about my body, running, eating and training for long distance running. I learned so much in my RRCA certification course! I also started to listen to my body more and push when I could, slow down when I needed and made RECOVERY a big priority.

Read: I figured out my body and didn’t do exactly what a book said, a blogger said, my mom said…

runner pose (287x510)

This post isn’t a FAVORITE Races of 2013 post because I really would run all of them again. I didn’t have great runs at all of them because my focus was on QUANTITY not quality this year – which is the exact opposite of what most people do and I am A-okay with that. I do me, you do you.

IMG_20131109_204440 (800x800)

But, I did want full disclosure that I didn’t run 13 half marys, ‘only 12’. And I did learn something at each race. So I’ll share…

What I Learned From Running 26 Races This Year

I learned that I can run 13.1 miles wearing a cowboy hat at Wine & Dine.

20131109_213838 (600x800)

I learned that carb loading is VERY important for running a full marathon. Looking back on the Marine Corps Marathon I was dragging, felt lead legs and hit the wall several times during that race. I reviewed what I did the day before and realized I did not have sufficient carbs for lunch or dinner the day before. #Fail

carb load (800x800)

I learned that being close to goal, but missing it makes me feel this weird, can’t breathe kinda feeling after a race. (Read: I thought I was hyperventilating but I really almost started to cry – I just didn’t realize it, after the Santa Rosa Marathon.)

glass case of emotion

I learned that I say very bad words to SR when she’s yelling at me during a race. (Ragnar SoCal)

skinnyrunner and the roller

I learned that PR-ing feels so good.

But so does running a race for fun with friends. Running is supposed to be fun, don’t take it too seriously.

IMAG0214 (451x800)

And now I am ready to set some goals for 2014!

Question: What did you learn this year?


  1. says

    Nice recap of your running year. That’s a lot of races you ran, what a great accomplishment. Could you share your fueling plan pre-marathon? Do you go by carb grams (regardless of whatever else you eat fat/protein wise) or eat carbs by percentage of your total calories? Sorry to hit you with questions. Happy new year to you, running and everything else!

    • says

      I don’t count carbs either way, but make sure to eat a good amount of them for all three meals the day before a marathon. I usually do a lot of rice and soy sauce the night before a race because I am a salty sweater.

      I have read that carbs should be about 85% of your food the day before a race. If you count it up, it should be in that ballpark. Good luck!

  2. says

    Totally agree about running for fun, not just for PR’s. I miss the days when my sisters and I ran races together and stayed together the entire time. Our race preferences have taken us in different directions now, and we haven’t run a race *together* in two years. :/
    Anyways, congrats on all your awesome races! What an amazing year!

  3. Melissa S. says

    I learned that I CAN run half marathons!! I ended up running 3 this year. And I am already registered for 4 next year and have 2 more to sign up for.

    I need to figure out my eating/training in 2014. Intuitive eating will have to be a priority! I am going to FINALLY talk to someone and get things figured out!!!

    I am so happy that I found your blog (yes, I am a creeper) and you are an inspiration to a lot of us ladies out here who are struggling with our eating. You look amazing! Happy New Year!!!!

  4. says

    26 races is a pretty amazing accomplishment and I think figuring out what works for your body is such an important yet difficult thing. It is hard to not try and do what books say or other runners and just do you so kudos to you! Have a great New Year.

  5. says

    That is amazing! 26 races, most of which were such long distances, is really incredible. For me, 2014 is going to be quantity, not so much quality, to build up endurance for a quality 2015 (read:IRONMAN!!). Mostly, I learned how truly capable I am. I can really do anything I put my mind to and it’s really motivating and uplifting. Thanks for being awesome!

  6. says

    This is a really impressive list! I’m thinking about running my third half-marathon this spring (in a 5 year span!) so your list is amazing and motivational. Good for you:)

  7. says

    That’s a lot of running! Congrats :) I learned that I am capable if more than I thought and to focus on why I love running and not how I should be running according to others. I also learned how to treat my asthma which made a world of difference!

  8. Angelica says

    Will you be writing about your 2014 goals? I’m also interested in how your passion (running) has affected your personal life, or rather, how will you try to make the two more cohesive? I find that the more time I spend running comes with a price/sacrifice (ie spending time with my husband & kid). Happy new year to you!

  9. says

    Great recap! Lots of running!

    I went from being an overweight non-runner, to a fitter me who can run! I’ve also recently really been improving my pace, so I’m really looking forward to 2014. Shooting for 12 races in 12 months.

    Let’s do this :-)

  10. says

    I learned that there will always be faster runners than me and slower runners than me. I just have to keep focusing on my own accomplishments and goals. I also learned that sometimes it is people who you have never even met that can make you feel so important and good.
    Social media outlets have allowed me the opportunity to have that.
    I also learned that 19 races felt like a lot until I read this post. 26 races including 9 full Mary’s??? Wowsahhh!! :)

  11. says

    Although you only ran 12 half marathons, I think you really did accomplish your goal this year. That many full marathons is insane! You’re my running role model!

    This year, I learned to pay attention to my body. If I was feeling pain and not sore, I took breaks. Also, I’m starting to realize I really need cross training, so I’m taking up the Combat program.

    Love your blog! :)

  12. says

    This is a great post! Congratulations! I’ve only recently started running (within the last year) and I completed 2 5ks, which I’m super proud of, even though its not a lot (: My goal this year is to complete a 10k and then hopefully next year a half marathon!

  13. says

    Holy crap! I had 0 idea you did all of that this year! I am really really impressed! (And can you tell, I’m something of a newbie to your blog?)

    Anyhoo, I learned how much real life (not running life) can affect you physically. I was telling someone else this, but 2013 was rough for me. My mom had a stroke, I got a new job, I got engaged, and my grandmother passed away. And running has never felt like more of a chore than in those days after my grandmother died. So it’s definitely not all physical! Take care of yourself mentally, and running will get a smidge more enjoyable!

  14. says

    You’ve been a real inspiration to me lately in my running. This year I’ve learned that runners are original; you can’t classify yourself based on the standards of other runners. I’ve had to really be introspective and figure out if I want to do something because it’s what other runners are doing or if I really do enjoy it and want to do it. For instance, a lot of running bloggers will be doing 14 races in 2014…I probably won’t be doing that because I’ve realized that I don’t actually enjoy races all that much and they end up stressing me out too much. Thank goodness for learning new things all the time!

  15. Laura P says

    I’m pretty new to your blog but what a year of racing for you!!! I had some good races this year but next year is a big one for me. I’m tackling my first full!!!
    I have learned that I am capable of more than I thought. I finally did the Runner’s World run a mile a day streak. I made it all the way to 21st w/o missing a day. I just totally forgot that day, just busy getting ready for Christmas. I was totally bummed but I realized that I could continue the streak to the end even though I missed a day. It was something I never thought I could do, running every day.
    Can’t wait to see how great 2014 is for all of us runners out there.

  16. says

    I think I’m the opposite – in 2013 I learned that running is really not the be all end all. I used to sacrifice family time so I could go to bed early and get up to run in the morning. Now, I have that extra glass of wine and enjoy that extra hour of conversation. I still train for races and PR’d in the marathon this year (after over a year of trying!), but I realized that it’s a hobby, not my number one priority.

  17. says

    I learned that training, speed work (which I hate) will result in a good or great race. I trained really hard for NYC. The weather was great and I got my sub 4:30 marathon on my 4th try.

  18. says

    Love it! I think that you ran 30 half marathons, as the marathons shold count double. This year, I learned that run mileage is probably the most important thing I can do to be a successful triathlon, so I’ll be upping that next year! :)

  19. says

    You did so amazing, well done!

    This year I learned I actually like running and it’s nowhere near as tortuous as it was when used as a punishment in PE. Burpees still suck though.

  20. says

    I have also learned alot about what works for me as a runner…but I know I still have a ton to learn. I think I am a much different runner than I was at this time last year, but the great thing about running is there is always room for improvement. Congrats on an awesome year of running!

  21. says

    Congrats on a great 2013! That is an impressive list of races, and I loved what you learned along the way … especially that we have to do some of our races for fun. Couldn’t agree more. The biggest thing I learned this year is that I am capable of so much more than I think I can do. I’ve finally started learning how to be comfortable with being uncomfortable as well as improving the mental part of my training. Happy 2014!

  22. april says

    congrats on a great year of running! i’d say you definitely surpassed your goal. does that mean you’re going to run 14 full marathons in 2014 now? 😉

  23. says

    Your 2013 is my dream running year. Congrats on doing all the races and living to blog about it.

    I learned this year that I’m capable of way more than I thought possible and it’s worth the effort and work. My 2013: 1,900 miles, 4 marathons, 9 half marathons, 1 18 mile race, and a handful of other shorter distance races. Can’t wait for 2014!

  24. says

    Congrats on your awesome running year! I’ve learned that I need to REALLY listen to my body and not go too hard too fast, or my shins hate me. Hopefully I can fix this for 2014 and have a year full of running, free of injuries :)

  25. says

    Congrats on a fabulous year of running! I just committed myself to run 14 in 2014. Will you be joining in on this? Cheers to a new year of running :)

  26. leann says

    Fingers in ears…I am NOT listening to your 2014 goals…I don’t know what I want to do…but after this year (I wanted to cry after Santa Rosa, too!!) I have to do my best not to meekly follow you! (If I’m going to follow, it has to be with verve!)

    See you Wednesday morning? 4:45 AM

  27. says

    This post almost brought a tear to my eye! What amazing accomplishments and how inspiring. My goal was to run two half marathons and I ran four within the last year. I can’t wait to train for my first full and complete many more halfies!

    I learned that running a race has to be for you, no one else.

  28. says

    I personally agree that you have surpassed your goal last year. It takes a lot of dedication and training to complete all of those. And yes, I also agree that you need to load up on carb prior to a race. I personally make sure that I have enough energy and I drink LOTS of water to make sure I stay on top of my race.

    Anyway, kudos to you for completing your goal last year! Keep on running!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *