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My California Anniversary

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been a year since I moved to California!

So last week has been a week of celebration and some reflection. In addition to this, it has been my first full week of rain in California. Which I find amusing… It’s like the weather God reminds me (during my minor complaints) that life in Cali is pretty good with sunshine most of the year (pretty much all the time last year) and I should stop my whining.

And the weather God is right. I have very little reason to whine. 🙂

It’s been an amazing year where I had to “learn” to run again after I broke my foot. But which made running even more precious. A year where I met an amazing group of people and made some awesome friends; friends who organized and came out to my Cali Anniversary party. A year where I started a new job in a new company and have been trusted to take on a new role within less than a year.

I am loving life and sometimes have to pinch myself to see that it is all real. Have you ever had to do this?

I am looking forward to continue my Cali journey and hope that year 2 will be equally amazing! My focus this year will be back to my wellbeing, being kind to myself and my body. A great journey to be on.


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What a year it has been!

I was going to call this blog post “life in the fast lane” and then I realized I have been picking the slow lane on the highways as drivers in Silicon Valley are insane and I better get out of their way… I am digressing already without having started the post really… Oops…

So, yeah, 2013. What a year!

Walking in the mud at bottom of Box Hill

Walking in the mud at bottom of Box Hill

The year started off great with a job offer in sunny California and as I prepared to leave London I broke my foot. What an irony. But life just works out one way or another, so with an unplanned rest I arrived in California ready to start a new chapter in my life.

Maybe the not able to run thing worked out for the best. I had to start slow. I easily adapted to my new job, the new company, the new work colleagues. I used meetup.com to get out and explore and make new friends. And then finally in May I was allowed to start running again, so I joined Team in Training again and made fabulous new friends.

20130921-170012.jpgI loved “learning” how to run again in 2013. There was no way I was able to aim for a PR. I wanted to let my foot heal and strengthen, so I took it easy. That is until I found trail racing… I wouldn’t call these “taking things easy”… Those hills are beasts! 🙂 I love those trail races. They happen in the mountains around the South Bay Area and usually come with great views from the mountains which – you may have guessed – you have to run up first. I found a partner in crime when it comes to running crazy races, my new BRF Lauren (you should check out her adventures training for a triathlon right now). Overall through Team in Training I found a whole new bunch of running buddies and friends who I am so grateful for.

I ran 4 races in 2013:

There are a few things that I slacked on last year. One of them was healthy eating and despite all the training in the second half of the year I put on weight again. California isn’t quite as healthy as its reputation. Something to tackle in 2014.

IMG_8646I also got to travel quite a bit for work: New York City, Seattle, Lake Tahoe, Brussels, Berlin, London. These trips were quite intense, but with most of them I also got to meet up with friends. I met an old university friend in Seattle by chance. Met a great friend in New York City, my family in Germany and my London friends in London. Though I did lose a bit of sleep traveling, it was worth it.

20130706-192911.jpgI had a few friends that came and visited or that I ended up meeting somewhere close by. These were always great opportunities to explore more, like Big Sur (which I have come to love) and the beaches. My brother came also for a visit. Sunny California does have its perks.

What I learned in 2013

  • Dare to dream! Your dreams may come true!
  • Ice bath with my awesome team mates from Team in Training

    Ice bath with my awesome team mates from Team in Training

    Team in Training participants are awesome wherever they are!

  • Listen to your Physical Therapist!
  • California really is sunny!
  • Silicon Valley driver’s are crazy!
  • California isn’t quite as zen as expected!
  • Business Class is the way to fly!
  • How to sleep on a long flight!
  • Sleep is good! Get it when you can!
  • Chocolate is still best in Belgium!

It’s been a great year! I really can’t complain (I try sometimes, but I really shouldn’t). I am trying to take a slower lane in 2014 not just on the highway, but cutting down on a few personal projects, so that I can enjoy my time in California even more.

Looking forward to continue chatting to you all.

Happy New Year!


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Sometimes we run…

TNT-Sep26-2013Sometimes we are a running team, sometimes we are an eating team, sometimes a  drinking team, sometimes we are a traveling team. Most of the time we are all of the above. Yesterday we were also a model team. 🙂

Some of my Team in Training running buddies met up yesterday for a team photo shooting. Well, it was a team run night, we slacked on the running front just a little as the photo shooting took a little longer than expected. But it was all good fun! I used the opportunity to also check out the panorama functionality on my iPhone. It turned out actually quite well, much better than I ever expected.

So this was our photo location at the South Bay:

20130927-175813.jpg


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Big Sur

No other run to report since Tuesday last week. But I walked another two 3+ mile walks. I am even going out for another one of these later today. YEAH! Earlier this morning, I already did my foot/ankle exercises prescribed by my physical therapist. Now that I actually  feel the difference they make to my walking and running, I do them voluntarily. I am such a diligent patient.  🙂

I had a friend in town, so running took a backseat and we went for a short trip to Big Sur. What a beautiful coast line! It’s rugged and windy and I wanted to share one quick photo of me holding on to a rock to not be swept away at the aptly named Hurricane Point.

At Big Sur on a windy day or maybe it's always windy at Hurricane Point?

At Big Sur on a windy day or maybe it’s always windy at Hurricane Point?