Friday, September 5, 2008

a year of racing ...

Tomorrow morning, I will be participating in a very soggy (thanks Hurricane Hanna) Annabelle's Angels 5K. An event that marks my one year anniversary of road racing (and really distance running for that matter). Prior to last September, I had never run three miles at any one time. In fact, I had been so opposed to running that I never completed the "mile run" in high school P.E. and as a Division 1 Track and Field athlete, I almost always found a way to get out of any "running" that lasted longer than a lap or two around the track. (Great work ethic, huh?)

But last year (while still pregnant with Doodle), something changed. I wanted to drop the baby weight, get healthy and most importantly, set a good example for my kids. So I decided to change my "anti-runner" ways (a PERMANENT lifestyle change, might I add), and vowed to run a 10K by the end of the year.

So that's what I did. When a group of Stroller Strides moms signed up to run the 2007 Annabelle's Angels 5K, I did too. I trained on my own (mostly to protect my own ego), following a program I saw in a magazine. It was slow going in those first weeks, a walk/run program that helped me build my endurance. But I muscled through and finished the 5K in 31:00 (while pushing Dizzle and Doodle). I felt accomplished and was hooked. Over the next two months, I ran three more races, including that 10K (which was very painful) that I had resolved to complete.

Then on November 26th, just over two months after my first race EVER, I started training for a marathon. Apparently, when I get going, I go big. It was an amazing experience, both mentally and physically. And I recommend that everyone try it, at least once (it will change you forever).

And how have I changed? Well, here's a short list of how my first year of running has affected me:

In my first year of running, I have become healthier than I have ever been.

In my first year of running, I have gained mental strength and self discipline.

In my first year of running, I have learned how to take time for myself and be a role model to my children.

In my first year of running, I have pushed myself farther than I thought I could, faster than I thought I could and harder than I thought I could.

In my first year of running, I met my 10K goal and went beyond it, completing 12 races (three 5K's, two 8K's, three 10K's, a half marathon, a marathon and two sprint triathlons).

In my first year of running, I ran 898 miles. If I averaged 10 minute miles, that equals 6.25 days of running or 150 hours.

In my first year of running, I have formed a bond with a group of amazing women thanks to the countless hours we have spent running together.

Kinda makes you want to lace up your sneakers and start pounding the pavement, doesn't it?


momof3 said...

In your first year of running someone contemplated putting the phrase, "I workout to look like T" on a shirt.

It sounds so condescending to say it, given that you are my idol in fitness, but I'm so proud of you. I am. This "business of running" is hard. I have been running for 4 months and 15 days (NOT that I'm counting, but, I did because I was curious) and I'll be honest, today I felt beaten by my run. I thought about quitting. Don't worry. I won't. I need to be there for you when D3 arrives and you need a nice slow running buddy. ;)

Navy Wife on a Diet said...

I needed to read this today. Thanks for posting it almost 2 years ago. :-)

Cheapskate4Life said...

This is awesome. I am inspired. I want to make this my "first year of running"! I know it's possible, I just have to DO IT! :)

Joggin' Momma said...

WOW!! Those are some amazing accomplishments in just one year! Keeps people like me (just getting back to running and can't run more than 1K at a time, haha!) motivated to know what is possible!!