ADI DAS! I don’t exclusively wear Adidas, but almost. Concerning shoes and athletic apparel, I love the brand, and I always have – for reasons starting with their shoes and then spreading into their quality and fit of clothing. But as running and racing became a bigger part of my life, I researched the company and became fascinated with the story.

The founder, Adolf Dassler, was an honest hard-working man, passionate about crafting the best shoe he could for the athlete. Between family drama, politics, and rising competitors, the Adidas brand has gone through a lot more than (I think) Mr. Dassler could ever have imagined. Initially, he wasn’t even on board with a clothing line. When he was convinced, he wanted to be clear that only sport “practical” clothes were to be manufactured and sold. He scoffed at the thought of starting a swimwear line because you don’t wear shoes in the water (his son, Horst started Arena anyway, but the company was sold in 1990). It was clear his priorities were in the shoe business.

From its humble beginnings as a family business that started in 1949, Adidas has grown into a multi-company corporation. In all of its 60 plus years of existence, I can’t say I’m ethically or morally on board with EVERY business decision Adidas has made, but as a whole, I trust the brand. Even though it’s not family owned anymore, it still seems to have Adolf Dassler’s “spirit” in it – the hard work and passion to deliver only the best. As a competitive athlete, I’m on board with that mindset.

Adidas shoes fit my feet and I like their sportswear, but I suppose you could argue that I can find another brand that suits my wants and needs. But I am a loyal consumer. When I find a brand that I like, fits my needs, and has meaning behind the name, I’ll stick with it. Adidas has deep roots – simple roots, honest roots. I like that. And it’s why I will choose Adidas over any other.

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La Jolla Half Marathon 2017

Going into this race, I felt pretty good. I had three solid weeks of hard training and THIS time I was prepared for those hard hills. The race has a later start time (7:30 a.m.) so I knew it could get hot. Getting a new personal best was a nice thought, but knowing the course, I didn’t have my heart set on it. I just wanted to race well, and finish strong – and I did.

Starting near the front of wave one, I saw the competition and recognized a few, but not many I knew. It didn’t matter. This time I was going to pace myself. I WASN’T going to get excited and burn out early. “Relax, breathe” was on repeat in my head. As my garmin buzzed at each mile, I glanced down with intrigue, but not much care of my time. This race was all about feel and knowing my body. I slowly picked off females and settled into 3rd just before the 8.8% grade hill over half a mile long, just after mile 5. Nearing the top, I passed 2nd. In an honest competitive spirit, it always feels good to pass someone on a hill like that. After overcoming the climb, I was passed by another female and knocked back down to 3rd. I told myself it was okay, and I needed to run my own race – afterall, it was only half over. The motorcyclist stayed with me and I could tell the gap between 3rd and 4th was widening. We rounded the final corner and I opened up my stride to go for it, just one second too late. I sprinted to the finish and missed beating her by 0.34 of a second. If I hadn’t hesitated, I could have had her. But, that’s all part of racing and why I love it. At least it made for an exciting finish. I was happy with how I raced overall, and surprised by a podium finish. I had negative split times of 7:15 average pace at 6 miles, 6:56 average at 10 miles, and finished with 6:50 average pace.

The Stats

Finish Time: 1:29:29.

27th of 4192 overall.

3rd of 2236 in women.

2nd of 350 in age group but the top 3 aren’t eligible for age group awards.