*note: this post is as much for me to reflect on the power of progress as it is to share with you. i hear blogs are so 2006, yet that is when i started running and i haven’t stopped since…so maybe change isn’t about stopping and starting; maybe it is about just keeeeeeeeeepin’ on!
I ran my first half marathon about 10years ago, approx 58minutes slower than I ran on February 15th and at least 25pounds heavier. I vividly recall crossing that finishing line feeling SO proud. I had just run 13.1 miles in 2.5 hours! It was ahhhmazing!
I like to think that I crossed that finish line, high on endorphins and have loved my running shoes every day since then. I love running ‘fast’, I love running slow, I love trails, I love the track. I love how I feel when I take my running shoes off! And it’s never been about pace times or finish line times for me because I always said “I am just not built like a runner, therefore, I will never run fast”. Yet I would religiously trot along, day after day. What I now know to be true is that it is hard to have big Kona Dreams and not be up for the run. So somethin’ was gonna need to change this year! This year, I was gonna learn how to run! Thanks to Coach Jazz, I think I’ve been on the University running program — it’s simple and consistent and I haven’t missed one minute of it. I’ve also been working with a Strength Coach in the gym who doesn’t let me off one rep of anything and a Brain Coach who is helping me to reprogram my self-talk.
I was feeling properly nervous going into the first start line of 2016. As “ready” to race as one can in February and certainly not carrying any sandbags of excuses, except:
I landed in the hospital 48hrs before the race. When the paramedics showed up to our apartment, they were convinced that my pain was from appendicitis or I was pregnant. I informed him that I was most definitely not pregnant and I really hoped it was not my appendix because I wanted to run on Sunday! The dude told me he wanted to race IM Whistler and I told him this pain hurt way more than an Ironman! I’ll spare the details, but by the Grace of God, I left the hospital late Friday afternoon and hoped that if I slept right thru to Sunday morning, perhaps I could at least start the race.
My trusty Mikey P and I decided to start the race together in an attempt to really hold back the first 10km. This was a great choice because I was most concerned about my guts falling out! After half way, he was going to take off and I was going to try to hang on. The plan worked! We negative split the race by…alot. It is a very new feeling to hold back so much off the start and be able to finish the last 5km progressively stronger, as I am most definitely known for blowing up. (Too bad we didn’t have another 13.1 to go cause I think we were right on track!)
Some interesting context, if I ran my first half marathon time (circa 2006ish?) I would have finished approx 957th out of 1049 female runners. Instead, I finished 35th/1049. There is nothing impressive about 35th female, but it is 922 spots higher than where I started. I reallyreallyreally wish that I could meet the ladies who finished 900th + above…I want them to know that I’m cheering them on….to simply.keep.running!
Notes to self:
+ I am so lucky to have such awesome running buddies (in the rain or shine!) for our training runs. They had great days out there and training together makes racing together even more fun!
+ Stay in awe of HotMama’s like Karen who have CHILDREN and still run a very casual 1:17.
+ Know thy body. Love thy process. Never take yourself too seriously. “Being ready” is a state of mind.
+ And always run on the track!
I have 3 sweaty goals this year and running thru the winter to a 1:29 at the First Half was goal number 1. So far, so grateful 2016 — we are off to a good start!