“Running started a domino effect of goodness in my life. I got into running 25 years ago because I was overweight. One morning, I went to go try on clothes with a friend, and the jeans didn’t fit. And I’m like, that’s it — I’m done. That night, I researched a health club, and the next day, I stopped eating junk food and partying like a maniac. I lost a few pounds, but then a friend of mine asked if I had tried running. I hated running — it hurt. I started off just walking and then jogging a little bit. From doing that, I lost 60 pounds in six months. I started doing little things like 5Ks, 10Ks, but didn’t really get farther than that until my ex-girlfriend and friends said we should do an ultra run. We trained for six months, and I did the 1997 Bulldog 50K Run in Calabasas. I finished in around 7 hours and 33 minutes. And, I just got the bug. I’ve never felt such a high from anything else. The running happened slowly over time, and then, here I am, over a quarter of a century later. This year, despite pulling my hamstring, I finished my next 50K in 20 minutes less time than I did when I was 27 years old. It was this sense of completion and finishing something I’d been wanting to finish since 2011. I was ecstatic. As you’re doing this run, you have a lot of time to think. I intentionally don’t listen to music. I like to hear the energy of the race. Just hearing other runners and people are encouraging each other. I love that because it’s more than just running. There’s community, friendship and people helping each other cross the finish line.” – Karen Prechtel from the HOKA Events team
Karen’s favorite shoe is the Challenger ATR.