I had always hated running growing up. It just wasn’t my thing. But I had a stretch for about 5 years where it was my coping mechanism and retreat from stressful jobs. I escaped and had time to think on my daily jaunts. Six days a week I made the time, so my weight and mental health benefited.
Racing didn’t really personally interest me too much, as I typically enjoyed my role as the biker behind all the walkers just listening, encouraging & keeping them safe. But I signed up for a few 5ks and kept getting better. I was proud of myself. As I got more addicted, I knew I had one shot to go hard core towards possibly completing a half marathon. (Just no desire to go for 26 miles) After all the abuse I had put my body through growing up in competitive sports every day and through college, I did ache all the time and my recovery time was starting to get longer with each year that passed by. But I committed. No regrets.
My friend Jamie and I trained relentlessly for months. I was ready. It was a non Disney race, as I wanted the challenge of the unknown. Winter in FL is hit or miss. As luck would have it, our big weekend was the lowest temperature recorded for that year at a brutal 33 degrees with winds hovering around 18-20mph for race start. Yikes.
Also I’m finicky in that I must wear shorts while running, so I’m literally shivering with blue lips even with my skull cap and running gloves on. But we suck it up and I start at a solid pace and get into my groove quickly.
Run your race.
13.1 miles to go – my only goal was to beat the 2 hr mark. And I must say I never ran more than 9 miles in a single clip during practice runs, but I knew adrenaline would push me through on actual race day. And it did….. I let my thoughts wander, so I don’t remember much else except what felt like a brick wall of wind when I turned onto the loop along the pier. It was insane.
But I felt invincible. I peaked at the exact right time and crossed that finish line in 1:46:29. I know I will never beat that mark and I’m ok with that. I went all out, as I always have to do.
I’ll never do another half but I’m so thankful that I became a runner that day. #rockit