Back to the Future Part 2…that’s the one where they go to the past, right? {The Friday Five}

I think this might be one of my favorite Friday Fives of all time.


Courtney, Mar and Cynthia have asked us to step into the Wayback Machine today and revisit our lives 10 years ago. Interestingly enough, I have been thinking about that a lot recently for a number of reasons.

As I’m sure is the case for many of you, my life was MUCH, MUCH, MUCH different than it is today. Going back a decade would put us in 2005…I was 27 years old and packed up my entire life to move from Baltimore to Ventura, California. I had no job lined up and no real plan of what I was going to do when I got out there. All I knew was that I needed a change.

10 Years Ago…


Shortly before my move I ran my first 5K, but that race had nothing to do with me personally. I HATED running. Instead there was something much bigger going on.

In late 2004 my stepmom, whom my father had been married to since right around the time I was 11, passed away from a brain tumor. She is the mother of my three brothers and as I’m sure you can imagine, my family was completely destroyed by her loss. I heard about the Race for Hope in Washington DC, whose beneficiary is the National Brain Tumor Society, and I knew I had to get involved.

Never mind the running hatred. It was something I had to do.


So I started a team and got quite a few friends on board. We raised several thousand dollars. It was my slowest 5K ever and yet the most important race I’ve ever done. I’m thinking I might want to run it again in 2016.

2) I was Driving a MINI Cooper Across the United States

Or rather my boyfriend at the time was doing a lot of the driving because said MINI Cooper was packed so full of stuff that driving made me nervous. During that 9 day/8night trip we stopped overnight in Pittsburgh, PA (hotel), Columbus, OH (friend’s house), Chicago, IL (hotel), Des Moines, IA (camped), Denver, CO (with family), Grand Junction, CO (camped), Bluff, UT (camped), Las Vegas, NV (hotel), and then on to LA and eventually my new, small, beach town home in Ventura County.

Not my MINI, but that's me in Venice circa 2005.

Not my MINI, but that’s me in Venice circa 2005.

I have colorful stories for days about it; from killer crickets in Colorado, to a creepy steakhouse in the middle of Nowheresville, Utah, to questionable stains on the wall of our Vegas hotel room. It was a once in a lifetime experience despite the fact that my boyfriend and I broke up at least once a day throughout the trip, which speaks volumes for how our relationship would go after that point. But I digress…

3) I Had the Most Ridiculous Commute on the Planet

Naturally when I got out to California, I needed a job. I was lucky enough to find some freelance within the first couple weeks I was there. (For those of you that might not know, I’m a designer.) So that’s great right?

Kind of. The opportunity was very cool–designing movie posters for an agency in Sherman Oaks which is just outside of LA. The downside? That’s more than a 50 mile commute in either direction.


I not-so-happily dealt with this for more than a month while in my free time looking frantically for absolutely anything else closer to my house. The job itself was really awesome, the people were nice and I had a hand in some cool projects, but…ya know…one hundred mile commute.

Just before I found a job in Santa Barbara (a mere 20-ish miles away and hence WAY more manageable) that agency offered me a full time position that I politely declined. The week before it had taken me nearly 6 hours to get home because a wildfire in the area had shut down the 101 freeway. Let’s just

4) I Adopted this guy

Meet Oskie.


At first I was often feeling pretty alone in my new surroundings and I had a little bit of trouble adapting to life on the west coast. I found Oskie all alone in a rescue–his brothers and sisters had already been adopted–and it was love at first sight. He moved in with me a week later and we’ve been together ever since. I know people say that dogs are man’s best friend, but this cat is mine.

He turns 10 in August. I can’t believe we’ve been together for so long.

5) And then the Human friends…

There are some seriously important individuals in my life right now that I never would have known had I not moved to the west coast. Living out there so far away from my family and friends back home definitely had its challenges, but I wouldn’t trade the experience or the wonderful people I met for the world.

Have you ever made a big move in your life? 

I hope that everyone has a spectacular weekend and if you’re racing, GOOD LUCK! The Baltimore Women’s Classic is Sunday and I’m sad to be missing it!




66 thoughts on “Back to the Future Part 2…that’s the one where they go to the past, right? {The Friday Five}

  1. Corinne says:

    I’ve lived in eight different states, and in many of those states (particularly Maryland), I moved multiple times! But there were two really BIG moves. The first was in April 1996, when my parents moved me down to Annapolis, MD from Columbus, OH. That one stands out because of the timing (six weeks left in the school year….) and what happened after we got there (my step-dad was let go shortly after my mom and I got down to Naptown and a 3-month live aboard adventure on a tiny sailboat turned into a 3 YEAR experience that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy). The second was when I quit my retail store manager job and relocated to Columbus, OH for a “normal” job, at the same company my mom worked for way back in the early 90s when I first lived here! I think I’m done with the big moves for a while. The next one will be tricky because it requires selling a house…..and that scares the living daylights out of me!

  2. Chocolaterunsjudy says:

    I moved from NY to MD for my first job. Then to VT to get married (with 2 cats in my car with me!). Same cats got to move to TX with us (they flew in cargo & thankfully lived to tell the tale). Then back to upstate NY with 2 cats & 2 dogs, in the cabin with us this time, which meant we had to make 2 trips. Fun times.

    One of my cats, Simba, yowled from the moment we got into the taxi until we pulled up to our new home some 12 hrs later. And damn near clawed his way out of his carrier – no exaggeration! I used to say my husband would never let me fly with him again, but sadly he passed away 2 yrs ago.

    His brother Gizmo, happily, is going strong at 14+.

    I always wanted to drive cross country.

  3. aliceruns says:

    It is so nice to read about Salt from the past! Indeed much different from your life now.
    I did make a big move. I change countries, left all my friends and family, for a guy, packed all my things (wasn’t much) and travelled 1000km west.
    Fast forward 6 years later, I am single, in a foreign country, all by myself. I finished my university degree and got a job, but my friends and family are still in Poland, the guy thing didn’t work out. But most importantly, I am a runner. Sometimes I wonder how long would it take to run back home.

    • runsaltrun says:

      Moving across the US was tough…I can’t even imagine moving to a different country entirely! I do know what it’s like to be so far away and missing your family and friends though. ❤ I wish I had been a runner back then. I think it would have helped me deal with this so much better!

  4. Sam @ See Sam Run says:

    Your cross-country adventure sounds like quite the trip. I would love to drive cross-country some day. Also I LOVE the spunk of 27 year old Salt with that mini cooper.
    My biggest move was probably moving to MD for college. I had plans when I got there with school and stuff, but I didn’t know anyone and didn’t have any family nearby. Thankfully I can still say that move was a good decision 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      It was definitely an adventure! More than anything I think I needed that change because I didn’t leave for college. I wanted to make sure I got that travel experience before doing any kind of settling down. 🙂 I’m so glad that you ended up coming here and one of these days we have to meet up!

  5. Running 'N' Reading says:

    Oh, my gosh; what a great post, girl! Sounds like we’ve all been through some crazy life changes in the last ten years; I was separating from my first husband ten years ago and working on a graduate degree in Guadalajara, Mexico. It was quite a time but I had no idea what would come later on; I’m so glad that my life is relatively boring now – ha! Thanks for sharing this and I hope you have a great weekend!

  6. Jamie says:

    10 years ago seems so long and not long all at the same time. I was just heading off to college, and didn’t really know who I was or where I was going in life. I hope you have a fabulous weekend : )

  7. Maddie @ Dixie Runs says:

    Wow, your first 5K story is so cool. I’m so sorry about your loss, but look at you finding the good in such a terrible situation. And look where it has taken you with your running! Oskie is the cutest 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you. ❤ Ever since I wrote this post I have been thinking more about signing up and fundraising again for next year and a couple of my team members from back then want to do it too! 😀

  8. Shawna says:

    yessss road trips! but that commute, UGH. i cannot imagine. i love California tho and would love to live there one day, i think. i moved to Colorado sort of on a whim when i was 22, and i’m with you — some of the friends i cherish the most are still there/i met through living there, so it was all worth it.

  9. charissarunning says:

    I love this little flashback of your life! Those DC ladies were quite creative with this topic. I hope you do get to run that race for your stepmom again ❤
    And Oskie is adorable!! I don't know why I didn't know you had a cat but he seems like the perfect little friend.

  10. Sun says:

    Oksie is so cute!! 10 years together is a long relationship 🙂

    I’ve never moved across the country – or even outside Wisconsin. I went to Madison for college but that is the furthest I’ve moved from home. Kind of boring but I guess it’s safe to say I like it here!

  11. SuzLyfe says:

    Driving cross country in a mini cooper. While jaunty, fun, and rather comfortable, not that spacious. And Oskie is adorbs. We got Zoe when she was 5, so I hope we 10 or maybe more years to come with the squirt!
    I wish I had done this one, but I was unprepared with pictures! I might have to retroactively do this post later.

  12. Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine says:

    You definitely had quite the adventure 10 years ago! And just think of how far your running has come since that first 5k:)

    • runsaltrun says:

      The biggest difference is definitely that I LOVE the running now! Back then if there wasn’t a dear-to-me cause attached, you couldn’t have paid me to run one. 🙂

  13. Jenn says:

    What a great experience! 10 years ago I had just graduated and was planning my big move to the Peace Corps. That fall I was invited to the program in the Dominican Republic. My next big move was when I moved back home with my Dominican kitty, Rubio. I agree that cats make good best friends. 🙂

    I finally made my first post, too. 🙂 I’m excited to see how this goes!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Wow you were in the Peace Corps? That’s amazing! And cats most definitely make some awesome friends. SO underrated. 😀

      I’m running over to check out your blog!!! I’m so excited to read it!

  14. sarahdudek80 says:

    What a fun post. Moving has been a part of my life for several years. When I was in high school I left my small hometown for Indianapolis (whoa big city!) to live at a training center. I thought I was big stuff :). Moved to NYC for college and bounced around the city for 10 years and now I’m in Chicago where I hope to stay. I seriously need to get some visits in out west though.

    • runsaltrun says:

      I have only been to Chicago once (during that cross country drive) and it only took me 24 hours to completely fall in love with it. I would love to come back for a visit soon!

  15. Alanna says:

    I think this might be one of my favorite Friday Fives of all time too! After I finished my Bachelor’s degree, I moved from Pennsylvania to Texas to be with my husband (then boyfriend). Once he finished school, he got a got offer in Maryland and here we are now. Oskie is so cute! I hope that you are able to run that race for your step-mom again.

    • runsaltrun says:

      That’s a lot of big moves! 😀 I’ve been to Texas a couple times and really enjoyed it.
      I started thinking a lot about that race after writing this post and I’m pretty positive I’m going to fundraise for the race again next year. I even have a couple of my former team members that want to do it with me!

  16. Debbie @ Deb Runs says:

    You were quite brave to move to the west coast, and then find a job! My hubby and I moved to Utah to start grad school three weeks after we got married. We took a week getting there so we could see the sights. Our stuff was in a moving van, so our little Corolla wasn’t so heavily packed.

    • runsaltrun says:

      I ended up shipping a whole lot of stuff before I moved out which was helpful. There is no way I would have been able to cram everything in that MINI! It’s so cool that you guys took the extra time to see everything too. I wish I could do it again one day. 🙂

  17. ChasingOliviaCrew says:

    So interesting to see more of your story. I made a pretty big move about a year ago and have since rebooted my running life – feels awesome – and it also feels amazing to look back and see how far I have come, both in my running and non-running life! 🙂

  18. kristenk says:

    Oh man, this post made me emotional! That move! I have similar long drive horror stories (crashing into a snowbank on a very secluded highway in Canada and popping a tire in the middle of nowhere in eastern AK), and missing my family is so so sooooo hard. But I’m glad we both had those crazy west coast experiences! PS I hate cats, but your cat actually makes me want to like them because he sounds so cool!

  19. ambertherunner says:

    I’m pretty envious of your cross country trip. My trip when I moved from CA to VA was a mere 3 days. It suuuuucked. I guess the upside was that I had my brother and dog with me, so no daily break ups 😉
    What is with CA and terrible commutes?! My boyfriend and I were sharing a car for several months out there, so I’d drive him 25 miles north to work, then turn around and drive 50 miles south to my work. Only to go pick my bf back up once I was off work. -_- Then there was my 100 mile round trip commute when I moved back to VA. Hooray for our commutes now =)
    Funny that I knew you have those crazy cat leggings & a cat tattoo, yet I never guessed you had a cat. Lol

  20. FLRunnerBoy89 says:

    I had to take a double take of that 2005 pic Salt! I almost didn’t recognize ya’ and I love the black and white photo

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