I hated to run.
I NEVER finished the timed mile in high school.
I faked illness to get out of any run longer than 800 meters.
But, for some crazy reason, when I was eight months pregnant with Doodle, I set a goal to run a 10K by the end of the year. Yet, by the beginning of August, I still couldn't run a mile without stopping. The possibility of a 10K seemed very slim.
Then, a few of my friends decided to run a 5K as a team. I signed on, figuring I had to bite the bullet if I was ever going to make my goal. And so it began. They all trained together. I trained alone - just in case I failed.
The weeks passed (six to be exact) and on the last Saturday in September, I ran my first 5K. It was the first time I ever ran 3 miles without stopping. It was the most glorious and maybe most painful (aside from childbirth) 31 minutes of my life. I knew I wasn't done with running after that 5K and my goal of a 10K by the end of the year became a half marathon in March. That half marathon never happened though, instead I switched to the full, because I either "Go Big or Go Home."
Now, four years later, I laugh at my stupidity. Who starts training for a marathon only two months after their first 5K? It was a bad idea. I got injured. I was mentally defeated during the race. I kind of wish I had done it differently. But, I can't take it back, I can only adapt how I train now and marvel at how far I have come in the last four years.
Yesterday morning, I ran my 5,013th mile since becoming a runner in 2007. Over those 5,013 miles, I have ...
- made and lost friends.
- found my "running style" (skirts and socks, obviously ...)
- had two running injuries (the same thing both times)
- determined that I am a runner first, logical thinker second.
- run through an entire pregnancy, including a 10K race at 35 weeks and 8 miles two days before delivery.
- completed 4 marathons, cutting my time by 51 minutes.
- completed 11 half marathons, cutting my time by 41 minutes.
- won my division at a four miler.
- placed third in my division at a sprint triathlon, despite not biking or swimming for two year prior to the race.
- I crashed my bike at Muddy Buddy and had a total AC Separation.
- convinced J to run his first, second and now third half marathon.
- paced Dizzle in her first 5K, a month before her sixth birthday.
- held hands with Doodle as she crossed the finish line of her first race at age three.
- been featured in Runner's World.
- found my passion.
- become certified as a running coach.
- pushed myself and all the limits I thought I had.
- changed myself both inside and out.