Introduction from Coach Kim Wrinkle
I remember Steve Kim as a new half marathoner in Coach Hilsenteger’s group. He has always trained hard and sought improvement, hoping to bypass traditional learning curves by progressing from the half marathon to the marathon in just a matter of months!
Steve joined Team Rogue in 2013 and has earned PR’s at every distance since, almost each successive race he enters. He willingly explores new diets and training ideas, seeking any edge possible to get faster and faster. Steve was the inspiration for our (Scott Telfer, Nancy Mallory, Steve, and yours truly) trip to the Chuckanut 50 km Race, which Steve finished in under 8 hours only 6 days after running the LA Marathon and only 27 days after the Austin Marathon!
Steve exhibits the true spirit of Team Rogue, constantly seeking improvement and encouraging his teammates. I am so proud to work with Steve and even more proud to call him my friend!
Coach Kim Wrinkle
The timer is counting up to 3:00 hours and I am coming down the home stretch with just a quarter mile remaining. I can feel the crowd cheering, my coach tapping on his stopwatch app on his iPhone, family and friends cheering me on, and I cross the finish line to finish the marathon in under 3hrs!!!! I then wake up from the daydream and just wish I could feel that elation of doing something that just seems so improbable to me. However, I am surrounded by runners at Rogue who can do that and better but the Rogue philosophy of JFR does not put a timer on your run, it simply says to Just F- run. And running is what I do, and have been doing for almost two years.
In the short time at Rogue, I learned cool abbreviations like PR/PB, MGP, HMGP, fartleks, Yasso 800’s and more, but I digress. The reason why I was asked to write this was to share my experiences from my very short running experiences. My running goal has to always been to be better than you thought you were and to keep pushing. Those who know me know I am not fast but want to be faster, and that I will put in the work needed, but it just seems like I started this running thing a little too late in my life.
My first year at Rogue was a nice lesson in humility. I started running in the half marathon training group and met a lot of great runners who later became great friends. I also met an amazing group of coaches at Rogue who exemplified all that is Rogue, basically bad ass mofo’s. So my initial race report goes something like this… I was aiming to run the San Antonio Half Marathon and trained as hard as I thought I could, but I came up short. I then moved into the Austin Marathon training group and set my eyes on the 3M Half Marathon. I signed up, but I never made it to the race because I overslept (yes, I am THAT guy).
I then set my eyes on the Rogue 30K but I caught a cold during race week, the Lakeline loop portion of the 30K broke my spirits and I missed my goal by over an hour! The next race was the Austin Marathon and I aimed to hit my goal there, but it didn’t happen. I missed my goal by almost 45 minutes. No worries though, I signed up for the San Diego Marathon in June, but I did worse than in the Austin Marathon. WTF was going on? I won’t lie and say I just continued to JFR (mainly because that acronym was not in use at this point). No, I opted to not take it seriously and took the training during summer haphazardly. When I did show up, I did not put in the effort needed and my times got worse….
The turning point happened after some great friends at Rogue told me about how they signed up for the Austin Distance Challenge and I decided to throw my name back in the hat and give it a whirl. I had flashbacks of my failures as my IBM 10K was slower than my Cap 10K, but I wouldn’t give up this time. I was part of Team Rogue and I could see Coach Kim Wrinkle kicking my ass, or at least running me over with his SUV. I rededicated myself and trained harder, pushed harder, and became consistent in my training.
Race 2, Run for the Water, was up next and I felt both stressed and excited. After the race, I was rewarded with what I felt like was a great time. Plus, it was an automatic PR, as I have never raced a 10 mile race before! I chalked that up as a win and continued to train hard. Next up was the Decker Half Marathon. I heard horror stories and just assumed I would not do well, but I would try as hard as I could to be better. I even drove the course with a good friend to develop an attack plan for the course; I was geeking out and loving it! Race day came and I PR’d that bad boy by 6 minutes! I was on a high. I wanted to run more and more and keep pushing…next up was the Rogue 30K. I wanted revenge, I wanted to prove I could run that faster, and I did. I improved my time by over an hour! I finished the race and felt great. Race 5 was next, the 3M half marathon. I knew if I just made it to the starting line that it would be a win. I actually got up early, thanks in part to some great friends, and made it on time. Oh yea, I PR’d that one too…my streak is now at 4 PRs!!!
The next race is the Austin Marathon. I know I had trained consistently, had some bad weeks and some great weeks, have endured tons of ups and downs, and when I toe that starting line in February, I will leave it all out on the course. I will have Team Rogue to thank, all the amazing coaches, the just as amazing family and friends, and will be proud of what I have done, regardless of the time…ok that’s a lie. I wanted to PR! Here’s to everyone that decides to run and not let anything get in their way. Enjoy what you have, and JFR!
– Steven Kim, January 2014
Steve went on to set a marathon PR of 3:56:05 on a muggy day on the hilly Austin course! Steve exemplifies to a “T” what it means to be Rogue with his commitment to doing all the work, whether it’s coming to core consistently, following the training plan and being a great teammate to the rest of the crew in Cedar Park. Team Rogue recognizes that we all have jobs and relationships that are a priority, but we don’t make excuses…we do what others aren’t willing to do in pursuit of excellence. Steve’s improvement has been an inspiration for us all in Cedar Park. He’s a big part of our community and every bit a Rogue! Follow this link to learn more about Team Rogue!