From baby steps to running strides … and everything inbetween.

Welcome to Virginia

So-long Solana (Part 2)

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We kick off 2016 with Part 2 of So-Long Solana – an explanation of our hiatus, blessings, chaos and changes over the past month and a half. If you have not yet read yesterday’s post, please go do that now.  It will help you better understand the moments that have led to this point …

As we begin 2016, three major changes are happening in our lives:

  1. I am leaving ElliptiGO
  2. We are moving to Northern Virginia at the beginning of winter
  3. We are moving in with Sarah’s parents.

Wait, what?!?! How is any of that good?! Trust me, it is, just keep reading …

Let’s start with the first change. I am leaving ElliptiGO. Ok, I may have sensationalized this a bit, but hey, it made you stop didn’t it?! I am leaving ElliptiGO, but only insofar as I will no longer be in the office every day. I have been blessed to work with a company that supports me and my family just as much as we believe in them, their product and their mission. While I am saddened to leave our incredible, fun-filled office environment – the lunch rides, the happy hour rides, the just because rides (see a theme there), the birthday parties, the

Gidget the Pug

This is Gidget. She’s not famous, but she should be. #PugLife

jokes, the conversations, the Gidget, the PEOPLE – I am blessed that they see importance in letting me remain a part of our growing and expanding team … no, family. When I came to them with the news that Sarah and I felt a need to move back east in preparation for the baby, we were met with nothing but support and understanding. I could not be more appreciative – more blessed. So, even though I was incredibly emotional walking out of the office for the final time, I am excited to continue in my roll working with our growing team (we are even currently hiring – see open jobs here!), awesome community of riders, incredible group of athletes and event/partnership opportunities. It also helped to lessen the pain of leaving such a great work environment knowing that Sarah and I both have plans to return a few times per year – with a third member of the family – for extended month-long trips. This will allow me to get back into the office during important periods, while allowing Sarah to take advantage of the impeccable and 100% predictable training environment we grew to love over the past two years. With that in mind, it was not “goodbye”, but rather “until next time” that I left as my farewell message for ElliptiGO HQ.

ElliptiGO at the top of Mt. Laguna

The company … after climbing an 11.69mi/4,209ft mountain for the ElliptiGO WC’s, because those are the types of really cool things we did together.

Next, let’s discuss the timing of the move. While winter may not seem like the best time of year to leave sunny southern California and head to the mid-Atlantic, there are a lot of reasons why this should and has to happen. No, the weather will not be quite as ideal Welcome to Virginia(well, that is unless El Nino hits as hard as they say it will this year), but the truth is, not only will Sarah be doing less outdoor training in the coming weeks as we near full-term, but she will also need to be established and settled in our new home before the baby comes. This will make for the easiest and quickest return to full training postpartum. When talking through the timeline with ElliptiGO, we decided that the latest we would feel comfortable heading to the east coast would be around the New Year. This, we felt, gave us enough time to get settled with a new doctor, set up the nursery and prepare for the next chapter of this journey to unfold.

Finally, the big one … we are moving in with Sarah’s parents. As a thirty year-old married man expecting his first child, this was a tough pill to swallow. Now, I don’t want you to get the wrong idea or diminish my level of appreciation for this opportunity, so please keep reading. For any guy in my position, moving in with your in-laws (no matter how well you get along with them) is a bit of a knock to your pride. I want to feel like the provider, the protector of my family.  I want to be “the rock”. Part of being that rock, however, is not letting my pride stand in the way of doing what’s best. I need to do this in spite of my pride, because this move is exactly what’s right for my family at this point in our lives. We have been given every opportunity we have asked for throughout this journey, and the offer from Sarah’s parents to open their doors to us is only the next in a long line of blessings. You see, the most important thing for Sarah and I right now is that we provide a loving, healthy environment for our baby; one that will support my continued career, Sarah’s return to training (her career!) and the development of our new family dynamic. Despite the fact that we built an extended family out in California through the people at ElliptiGO, members of the local running/endurance community and our friends at dog beach, both Sarah and I’s immediate families are on the east coast. We are going to need those extra hands when this baby arrives if we want the opportunity to provide the best life going forward for all three of us.

To put it short, when it comes to my career, Sarah has always supported it 100%.  When it comes to her career, I am her coach & training partner. I can easily write workouts, train with Sarah and hold a stopwatch simultaneously – all before the workday begins. However, holding a newborn alongside those other tasks becomes a little more … impossible. Simply having the ability to head to Sarah’s former high school track and having her mom, who still works there, come watch our baby girl, is something that we simply couldn’t do out in California. For us both to continue having the careers we do, we need hands, and lots of them. Our families are both incredibly supportive of everything we do, and for that we are forever grateful.

This support has included Sarah’s parents finishing their basement to turn it into our own personal guest quarters so we have a private space to begin our little family. We debated buying our own place or moving into a rental down the street, but what’s the rush? Why force more stress on ourselves when we have everything we need being offered? Why let pride stand in the way of reason? We will have family nearby, more space in the basement alone than our town-home in California and time to figure out this ever-changing period in our lives. We are lucky to have this opportunity.


Our parents, for whom neither of us could be more grateful.


So, while the three big changes taking place in our lives may not seem like the ideal scenario to someone on the outside, but for us, it’s perfect. We couldn’t be more blessed to have incredible family, friends and employers supporting us and making all this happen. To all of you, we say, “THANK YOU” from the bottom of our hearts. Because of you, 2016 has never looked so good!

Happy New Year from the BTeam!

Author: The BTeam - Darren & Sarah Brown

A wife, mother and professional athlete. A husband, father, coach and training partner. Telling our story as we make our way through parenthood and chase our dreams together.

One thought on “So-long Solana (Part 2)

  1. What a wonderful post…despite you nearly giving me a heart attack with “I am leaving ElliptiGO.”

    I love your outlook and wish all the best to the 5 of you and your extended families as you begin the new adventure.


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