Welcome to Karen on the Field!

I’ve wanted to start a blog for some time to chronicle my journey with running – including injuries and the successes and setbacks I’ve had in my attempts to run faster marathons – as well as my current journey to better balance my life in terms of work, personal relationships, and other goals I hope to achieve. Additionally, I may also write about things I come across on balancing life that I find interesting.

A work goal has finally prompted me to set up my first blog, Karen on the Field. A former co-worker suggested the name of the blog, partly for all the track workouts I was doing at one point to train for the Houston Marathon. She also had suggested the name because she thought that the events of our life could be seen as taking place on a big field. I liked the analogy and the imagery that it brought to mind, so I took the idea for my blog’s name.

First, a little about me. I’m Karen, a 41-year old Texas native who lives in the Houston area. I graduated in 1995 with a degree in journalism from Texas A&M University, and have covered the oil and gas industry for 15 years. I’m a longtime runner who’s run over 15 marathons (I’ve lost count!) and who enjoys cycling, reading, writing, music, movies and hanging out with friends and family. I’ve been married for almost 10 years (no kids, but lots of teddy bears hang around our house).

The idea behind this blog is to chronicle my efforts to balance my life, with the idea that living life is like running a marathon, a feat that requires proper training, hydration, good nutrition (not only for the body, but the mind and the soul), injury prevention and proper pacing are key to running a successful race.

In my years of racing, I’ve found that, even with all the right preparations, things can go wrong (such as warm, humid temperatures on race day, unexpected illness). Work and home life also can make training a juggling act. In recent years, work in particular seems to enjoy throwing me curveballs, which at times makes the commute to the track for a workout a workout for my car!

The ups and downs of training, life and work in the past few years have made my life seem like a stormy sea at times. The attitude I’ve developed for all this can be summed up in a sign I received when I ran the Texas Half Marathon (an event held in the Houston area on New Year’s Day). That particular year, signs with all the names of the race entrants were posted on the trees that lined the trail route. The signs had encouraging messages for the runners. I’d never seen that at a race before, and I thought it was a nice touch (sadly, they didn’t have it at the race the next year due to rain).

My sign is short and sweet: Keep going! Karen Boman

I have this bright pink sign posted above my desk, and it’s my motto for day to day life. Even on the days when I’m feeling fed up with work or other things, I just remember the sign – to keep going, no matter what. It’s a strategy that I’ve used on race day (particularly the last six miles of the marathon), and it’s a good strategy for life – to pick up and keep going.