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2016 My Year In Running

Well, 2016 has been quite an interesting year in running for me. Care to look back on the evolution of a year of recovery?

2016 My Year In Running

Running By the Numbers

My first month of running since breaking my back. April Miles Bring May Smiles! @sulyfe

My first month of running since breaking my back. April Miles Bring May Smiles!

I didn’t keep track of the miles, but I will say that for the past 2 months, I’ve been averaging 30-40 mile weeks and loving it. A marked difference from 0 miles at the beginning of the year! But, for the sake of being a team player:

1 DNS (Boston Marathon)
1 Half Marathon (Mag Mile Half)
3 10Ks (BTN Big 10K, AMITA Fitness for America 10K (dropped down from the half), Run 10 Feed 10k)
2 5Ks (Palmetto Bluff Turkey Trot, Wanderlust 5k)

April was my first month of running throughout the month, and it was followed by one of the hardest months of my life due to mental health (depression and anxiety) issues as well as physical issues. 

Best Run

How gorgeous is this weather! Perfect for a late summer run along the lake front of Chicago @suzlyfe

Every run was my best run this year, because every run was a run. Even the BTN Big 10k, when I was in the midst of a Crohn’s Disease flare and barely finished, was a gift for the miles and the fact that I got to run much of it with Alex (and give others race entries!).

Alex and I before the race! Amita Health Fitness For America Sunset Half Marathon/10k/5k Race Review and Race recap at

Best Running Advice

Well, I gave plenty of running advice myself via Running Coaches Corner

Best Race Experience

The Mag Mile Half Marathon was my best race. I hit my goals, got to run my city, see friends, be cheered on by my old athletes as I ran by them, and Alex finished the race with me. The only goal that I didn’t nail was the fact that I took a bathroom break, but my running time (without the stop) meant that I hit my A goal and I got my half marathon sans bathroom break the next week!

Favorite Medal

You are going to notice a trend here, but Mag Mile Women’s Half Marathon. That race gave me back much of my confidence in myself, and gave me closure on my return to running.

Favorite Picture from a Run or Race this Year

We knocked it out of the park! Don't miss this recap and review of the Chicago Run Mag Mile Half Marathon and 5k! This flat fast course is perfect for a PR! Get the full review at

My first half marathon after Sacral Stress Fracture!

The fact that Alex was with me for all of my races this year mean that I have 4 favorite pictures. But my favorite favorite? Mag Mile. I am just so happy–to have run the race that I did and to have Alex there.

My Year of Running in a Word:

Resurgens. Though this was the word that I associated with the Phoenix Marathon (full explanation of that here). But this year was truly my resurgens year, my year of rising up from the ashes and finding myself again as a runner. I had to figure out how to navigate coming back from my injury (the fear, the pains, the changes in my own running and my identity as a “fast” runner). I owe so much of my return to running to the incredible support that I received from each of you, my family, my clients and my Team Challenge family, and especially Alex, whose newfound love for running got me going.

What Is Up Next?

Saying goodbye to running again. I have started to discuss this, but my IVF journey is going to necessitate that I take another forced break from logging miles. I honestly think that everyone else has been freaking out about me freaking out about it even more than I am! Thoughts on that are to come, but I will be at least be able to start the year with a run, even if I have to stop running just a few days in.

Why Resurgens perfectly describes Suz's Year in #running #runchat #fitfluential Click To Tweet

What word would you choose to describe your year in running or in fitness?

Thank you to Courtney for hosting the Year of Running Linkup!

I am linking up with myself, Rachel, Lora, and Debbie for Running Coaches CornerPatty, Erika, and Marcia for Tuesdays on the Run, Nicole, Annmarie, Michelle, and Jen for Wild Workout Wednesday, and Ilka and Angela for Food and Fitness Sunday. 

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Have you read these gems?


  • Reply Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious

    I’m sorry you to have to take a break but breaks can be good and in this case you will get an awesome reward!
    Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious recently posted…10 Foods To Calm Holiday StressMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 5:05 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Let’s hope so!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:28 pm
  • Reply Lisa @ Mile by Mile

    You really did have a great year after what you came back from! It must be strange to know you will have to stop running after making all this progress. Usually this would be the point where most of us are looking at what races we will do next. But you are preparing for an even bigger goal!
    Lisa @ Mile by Mile recently posted…Year of Running 2016My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 6:01 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Always in training, just for something different this time!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:28 pm
  • Reply patty

    Oh- a break, that’s a bummer. But for a very good reason! Many prayers for a successful start to 2017 for you and your family!

    December 20, 2016 at 6:14 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Patty!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:27 pm
  • Reply Jamie@The Mom Gene

    You look the happiest when Alex is in the pictures! The break from running will be hard and good (as the important stuff usually is). I did not run with IVF or pregnancies and was on bedrest for parts of them and running came back so naturally and felt so good when I could do it again. January prayers coming your way.
    Jamie@The Mom Gene recently posted…A Prayer for Germany in an Apocalyptic WorldMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 6:52 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you so, so much, Jamie, for the prayers and for the words! I am definitely happiest when I have my running (and life) buddy by my side!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:27 pm
  • Reply Heather @Lunging Through Life

    I just love that you got back to running this year!!! And taking time off will be 100% worth it
    Heather @Lunging Through Life recently posted…When You’re Not Sure What You Want To Do Full Body WorkoutMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 6:56 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I definitely believe it!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:26 pm
  • Reply Julie @ Running in a Skirt

    I think this break will not be as hard on you because you know you have what it takes to get it back… as you proved to yourself this year. You’ve got this!!!
    Julie @ Running in a Skirt recently posted…Healthy Peppermint Chocolate SmoothieMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 7:12 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      LET”S GO GET IT!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:25 pm
  • Reply Kelli @ Hungry Hobby

    You certainly made aa freaking awesome come back, it’s been fun to watch (read?) your progress girl!
    Kelli @ Hungry Hobby recently posted…Garlic Dill Baked Salmon with Lemon Herb ButterMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 7:34 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Kelli! I really really appreciate it!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:24 pm
  • Reply kat

    You made an awesome comeback girl, and you can do it again! This time with an even bigger motivation – pushing a stroller! πŸ˜‰
    kat recently posted…Paleo Single Serve Chocolate Chip CookieMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 7:36 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      OMG I will die.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:23 pm
  • Reply Marcia

    Congrats on a wonderful year! Take it from the old lady who’s been where you are: In the grand scheme of things, this break from running will be just a blip in time and will be SO well worth it. Onward to new, exciting adventures in 2017!

    December 20, 2016 at 7:47 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Exactly. I’ll take it!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:22 pm
  • Reply Ellie

    I loved rereading about your year Suz πŸ™‚ I’d also say you’re an overcomer. And I doubt you’ll be off running for too long, who knows, maybe you’ll develop a different passion, like poker πŸ˜‰
    Ellie recently posted…Starting to run again and Holiday thingsMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 7:51 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I am open to the path that presents itself, Ellie. Thank you so much!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:22 pm
  • Reply Montana @ Pretty Lil Mudder

    You’re a rockstar! Coming back from an injury like that is amazing! I’m so glad you had the chance to run again. Can’t wait to get the chance to meet you when I hit Chi town next year πŸ˜‰
    Montana @ Pretty Lil Mudder recently posted…Gasparilla Amber Challenge + Tri Training Begins Week 3: 12/12-12/18My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 7:59 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      WOOOOHOOOO so excited. And thank you. I’ve been doing my best.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:21 pm
  • Reply Laura @ Mommy Run Fast

    Such a roller coaster year! That injury probably prepared you well to take time off again from running while ttc- you realize that the world doesn’t end when you stop running, and you really don’t lose that much fitness. It’s always hard, but I love your attitude!
    Laura @ Mommy Run Fast recently posted…One of my favorite 5k workoutsMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 8:20 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      While I would say that I personally lost a bit of speed, I didn’t lose tons and tons of fitness. Then again, I was out for 5 months. But you hit the nail on the head–I will survive!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:21 pm
  • Reply Jessica Marie @ FlashFitTrainer

    Wow, that’s a lot of running in one year! I don’t really think I could give my running this year much of a word. Just plain treadmill running while the kids sleep. Nothing spectacular.
    Jessica Marie @ FlashFitTrainer recently posted…Free Writer’s Resource: All Different Words for β€œThing”My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 8:36 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      But hey, it is still running, right? That is special enough, in my opinion.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:20 pm
  • Reply Michelle

    Great year! The break will be worth it, I promise! xoxo
    Michelle recently posted…ThanksMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 9:02 am
  • Reply Suzy

    Ya, I was going to ask when your last run will be! You’ll take a break, get preggers, have a baby and then come back stronger than ever. There’s something about having a baby that turns a woman’s body into a running machine.
    Suzy recently posted…Week in Review: It’s Snow ProblemMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 9:28 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hey, if I can come back like you…. ALL THE BABIES

      December 24, 2016 at 2:19 pm
  • Reply Emily

    This was a total year of resurgence and growth for you Susie. I loved watching you run distance again and embrace it and love it and heal. <3 Such a blessing, and I hope that this will be a new year of blessing and glorious running out in God's WONDERFUL world.
    Emily recently posted…How to Receive a Gift This Christmas SeasonMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 9:50 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I hope so for us all!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:18 pm
  • Reply Tamieka

    I love your smiles in your pictures!!!

    Looks like it was a great year of running for you. So glad you were able to have a great year of running!

    Best of luck with IVF..sending positive thoughts and blessing to you all!

    December 20, 2016 at 10:41 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Tamieka! It truly just wanted to soak up all the loving for running that I could this year.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:18 pm
  • Reply Lesley

    It’s never fun to have to take a break, but it’s a good reason this time. No injury, and good luck with your journey!

    December 20, 2016 at 10:49 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank goodness, and thank you!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:17 pm
  • Reply Laura @ This Runner's Recipes

    I love your word for the year, and not just because it’s Latin. I think that’s the right spirit to carry into a deliberate break from running! Also, all the running photos of you and Alex are adorable. I’m so happy that you found a running buddy in him! Husbands make the best built-in running buddies.
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Pay It Forward this Holiday Season with StonyfieldMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 10:51 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I’m so glad that Alex has become my running buddy. Now, if only his stupid calf would get better….

      December 24, 2016 at 2:17 pm
  • Reply Ange // Cowgirl Runs

    I’m glad you were able to return to running and find love for it before taking a forced hiatus.
    Ange // Cowgirl Runs recently posted…Rowing at Movement UMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 12:38 pm
  • Reply Anna @ Piper's Run

    You had a great year! I feel like I had one race that was my best for so many reasons. I loved that my husband ran it as well, it wasn’t about my time…it was just about running. I’m happy for you and your next adventure….running will always be there.
    Anna @ Piper’s Run recently posted…Chilly Temps & Lots of Excitement!My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 1:22 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That is so true. I’ve had plenty of great racing, I’m just glad to have running and to leave it in a good place this time.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:16 pm
  • Reply Janelle @ Run With No Regrets

    What a year! I’m glad that you were able to get back to running after injury and share some great memories with Alex. Looking forward to see what’s next!
    Janelle @ Run With No Regrets recently posted…Introducing Tunes Tuesday – New Linkup!My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 1:37 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hopefully more great memories with Alex… and a jogging stroller!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:15 pm
  • Reply Meranda@Fairytalesandfitness

    You are so lucky to have Alex to run with. I know he makes running and racing even better!

    December 20, 2016 at 1:52 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I am so thankful to have gotten the opportunity to run with him this year. It has been the best experience!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:14 pm
  • Reply Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner

    This time taking a break from running will be very worth it!! I love all your photos with Alex this year.
    Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner recently posted…Pumpkin and Cranberry Holiday Oatmeal BakeMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 5:21 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It was so much fun to run with him!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:14 pm
  • Reply Clarinda

    Sounds like the Mag Mile was a great race for you. Nice!

    Cheers to 2017 – even with a running break.
    Clarinda recently posted…My Year in Race Bling 2016My Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 5:58 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you! Mag Mile was a great race, and one that I sorely needed!

      December 24, 2016 at 2:13 pm
  • Reply Rachel

    You definitely had a great year. And I think you’ll be fine without running. You’ve got bigger fish babies to fry right now. You can run after babies. πŸ™‚
    Rachel recently posted…When Plans Take Shape and Find LifeMy Profile

    December 20, 2016 at 9:08 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I hope I don’t fry my babies. Or that my babies are fish. That would be confusing.

      December 24, 2016 at 2:12 pm
  • Reply Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table

    I’m beginning to think that you and running have more drama than ME and running have. Be proud. πŸ˜‰
    Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table recently posted…Mastering the Art of French ScallopsMy Profile

    December 21, 2016 at 2:31 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I will hang my hat on that, I guess. Winning is winning, lol

      December 24, 2016 at 2:10 pm
  • Reply Patricia @Sweet and Strong

    Sorry to hear you have to take a break from running going into 2017, but congrats on all your accomplishments this year!
    Patricia @Sweet and Strong recently posted…12 Days of Christmas Bodyweight WorkoutMy Profile

    December 21, 2016 at 7:46 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you! Hey, if I am going to go out, might as well be on my own terms, right?

      December 24, 2016 at 2:02 pm
  • Reply One of my favorite 5k workouts |

    […] am linking up with Suzlyfe, Rachel, Lora, and Debbie for Running Coaches Corner, and Nicole, Annmarie, Michelle, and JenΒ for […]

    December 21, 2016 at 8:08 am
  • Reply Kristy from Southern In Law

    You have had such a great year – but I feel like 2017 will be even better! I’m sure at times you’ll have FOMO… or er… I don’t know? Running envy? but it will all be worth it!
    Kristy from Southern In Law recently posted…The Best Healthy Christmas Recipes (with options for all types of diets!)My Profile

    December 21, 2016 at 2:12 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I’ll definitely have some running envy… or maybe I won’t and will rejoice in being a sloth!

      December 24, 2016 at 1:53 pm
  • Reply Karen @ Fit in France

    So happy that the end of the year turned out better than the first quarter. I think the hard times make us appreciate the good times so much more. Wishing you happy holidays and your new ”forced” running break is for a very good reason.
    Karen @ Fit in France recently posted…My year in runningMy Profile

    December 22, 2016 at 1:06 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Karen. And you said it: glad to have finished out strong!

      December 24, 2016 at 1:47 pm
  • Reply Michelle @ Fruition Fitness

    What a year! Best of luck in 2017!
    Michelle @ Fruition Fitness recently posted…5 Keys to a Healthy Holiday Season + a Printable Reminder!My Profile

    December 22, 2016 at 7:19 am
  • Reply courtney @ eat pray run dc

    I was really happy to get to meet you randomly this year! I’m pulling for you and Alex next year on your journey. I think your honesty and openness are probably helping so many dealing with similar situations. Merry Christmas, lady!
    courtney @ eat pray run dc recently posted…Planning a Holiday Lights RunMy Profile

    December 24, 2016 at 11:16 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      So happy that we saw each other πŸ˜€ One day we will have a real run together!

      December 24, 2016 at 12:47 pm
  • Reply masala girl

    i know it’s been a bumpy year but that’s so amazing you’re currently running like 40 miles a week!! hopefully you’ll end 2017 just as well πŸ™‚ happy holidays!!
    masala girl recently posted…Kabocha Squash, Broccolini, and Tofu Red Curry (without Coconut)My Profile

    December 24, 2016 at 5:22 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hey, if taking a few weeks/months off of running has the same results + a baby… I”LL TAKE IT!!

      December 27, 2016 at 4:59 pm
  • Reply San

    Sounds like you had a great year and maybe that will help you through this next year when you won’t be able to run that much…. you know why you’re doing it πŸ˜‰
    San recently posted…Vacation Recap – the last few daysMy Profile

    December 27, 2016 at 4:46 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It will honestly make it so much easier–knowing that there is another side.

      December 27, 2016 at 4:59 pm

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