St. Jude Marathon Finish

Finishing my first marathon

My name is Sarah, and I began this blog when I was training to beat Oprah’s 4:29 marathon time in my first marathon, the St. Jude Memphis Marathon in December 2014. I thought marathoners were crazy until I ran one, achieved my goal (mostly), and caught the marathon-bug.

I hated running for as long as I can remember. I was a team-sports-girl growing up, and running was a necessary evil for conditioning. I had a brief flirtation with running my first year after college, and I decided to train for my first and only sprint triathlon. Around that time, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease (autoimmune thyroid disease), and along with adapting to the demands of 60-80 hour work weeks at a Big Four accounting firm, I lost any desire to run. I ran on and off to burn calories, but it was another 4 years before I began running again with any consistency. I trained for a 10k road race and crushed my sub 1-hour time goal, finishing around 56:00. I was hooked and haven’t looked back since.

Shamrock N Roll

That 10k road race where it all began.

It’s rarely gratifying to work really hard to be average at something, but what I, and probably many of you, love about running is that the competition is primarily with the girl (or guy) in the mirror. For most of us adult recreational runners, the thrill of amazing yourself by training/committing/performing at a level you never expected to achieve is incredibly gratifying. I amazed myself by running a 2 hour half marathon. Now that I’ve met my goal for my first marathon, I’m pretty sure I can slay giants.

I read other running blogs when I started thinking about running a marathon, and I loved reading all the different marathon experiences that people have shared. Hopefully, adding my own experience will be helpful to someone.

I grew up in the Memphis suburbs, went to school at Baylor, lived in Dallas for four years, and have been living in Atlanta since 2012. I’m a big fan of Baylor football and have a strange superstition that I have to wear green and gold every time they play. This includes races – Baylor won the Big 12 championship on the day of my first marathon, and you can bet I was clad in green and gold from head to toe!


I also like to try new recipes, visit a new city, or make something fun for my house. I’m rarely visiting new cities for vacation; as a financial regulator I typically travel for work once or twice a month. I’ll try to include some non-running highlights on the blog.

cat in box

I live in Atlanta (the actual city, not the suburbs!) and have a super-cute cat, Lucy. My super-hot boyfriend, Jeff, has crushed Oprah’s marathon time twice.

Thanks for visiting!

Email: racingoprah@gmail.com
Twitter: @racingoprah
Instagram: sarahemerrill


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