March 21, 2012
For immediate release

Sacramento Running Association’s Elite Team runner bounces back from Olympic Marathon Trials with win

The long, demanding buildup to the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in January took its toll. So now Lindsay Nelson looks for shorter ways to test her talents.

Already, the former Chico State standout who recently joined the Sacramento Running Association’s Elite Team has found success, winning the Bidwell Classic Half Marathon on March 3 in 1 hour, 19 minutes and 12 seconds.

“Right now I’m really liking the half marathon,” the 26-year-old Nelson said. “When I have a really good race, I end up liking that distance.

“I’m trying to drop down to the 5k and 10k … I’d like to get down to shorter stuff for awhile.”

Nelson has shown marathon promise, winning the 2010 Long Beach Marathon in 2:45:08 and setting a personal best of 2:43:00 in the 2011 Rock’n’ Roll San Diego Marathon.

But she headed into the Olympic Trials on Jan. 14 in Houston feeling a bit over-raced.

“I didn’t go into the Trials really confident,” said Nelson, who lives in Roseville. “It was still an amazing experience.”

Nelson, who finished 10th in the 10,000 meters at the 2007 NCAA Division II Championships with a 37:23.30 effort, thought she would do well on the Houston course, which featured an opening 2.2-mile loop followed by three eight-mile loops.

“I thought I would enjoy the loops,” she said. “It was a really bad day.”

Nelson finished 130th in 2:52:55.

Her fiance, Roseville’s Tim Tollefson, finished 79th in the men’s race on the same course and day in 2:27:00.

Nelson took two weeks off from training before starting to build toward a 2012 season without a specific game plan.

“I kind of play it by ear,” she said. “I’m really flexible.”

And talented. Besides her running ability, Nelson was a serious piano player in her high school days, playing in recitals, accompanying groups and even teaching.

“I haven’t really touched it for a long time,” she said.

Nelson might eventually say that about the marathon, too. But she plans to return to the distance that took her to an Olympic Trials.

“I’d like to make it to the next Olympic Trials,” she said. “I’d like to be closer to the top 50 (going in) than the top 70.

“I’ve got a long time ahead of me to figure things out and how it works. I think it takes awhile to figure out how your own body works.”

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.

SRA beneficiaries include the American River Parkway, youth fitness programs, local running venues and aspiring young runners.

Sacramento Running Association events include the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run on April 1, the Lake Natoma Four Bridges Half Marathon on Oct. 28, the California International Marathon on Dec. 2 and the recently concluded Super Bowl Sunday 10K Run.