Thursday, November 21, 2013

Running Diary: Then and Now

On the left at my first 5k, on the right at my second half marathon.
This past weekend I ran my second half marathon in a month. I may be crazy but only half crazy. While at the start line I couldn't help but think about my journey leading up to this point. I never thought I'd ever complete a race since a few years back I could barely run a mile. Yet there I was about to run another 13.1 miles but this time down the Las Vegas strip. Glancing at my shoes I thought about the miles it took to get here.

I'm not shy in admitting my loathe for running once upon a time. I used to think it was the most boring form of exercise. The idea of running distance never appealed to me. My sister was a runner, and good, too, but I remember thinking she was nuts for liking it. People always ask me what changed my mind, the answer is simple, because it challenged me.

 I remember my first 5k as if it was last week instead of four years ago. I hadn't run at all prior and my attempt at training meant a few minutes on the treadmill. At the time I was out of shape and didn't have a regular exercise routine but the short distance still appealed to me. I didn't realize how unprepared I was until I started. I was terrified I'd be the last to cross the finish line.  My mom and good friend were there to support me but it didn't help with my self doubt, about my speed, how far I could go before I had to stop, and my overall ability to complete it. I didn't know it then but the race was a turning point as it is the base to my running journey. I finished with a time I was disappointed in but walked away knowing it was a catalyst to challenge myself.

The following years I kept up the 5k races beating each previous race time but knew I needed a new goal. Last year some friends decided to run the 10K Bolder Boulder and I was excited to join the team. Again, I hadn't been running consistently prior to the race and I don't recommend following suit. At this juncture I had the spark but not the fire for running.Since the races were few and far between I didn't keep up a schedule for runs. However, I was determined to complete it without stopping and I did. It was the longest distance I had ever run in my life. The experience was fun but the real game changer came later.

My brother had informed me he was signing up for a half marathon and asked if I'd be interested in running one. First thought, no way! Second thought, well....maybe. My inner competitor was intrigued, even if the opponent was myself. Before I knew it I was entering and looking up training schedules. Here is where the fire began, the burn to really challenge myself in a new way. It would take weeks of training and dedication and since running had always been a challenge I was motivated even more to become better at it. I never called or considered myself a runner before but now I see I was the minute I began. Running may not be for everyone, but it has brought new insight into my body, mind, and what I'm capable of when I put my mind to it.

Inspire. Motivate. Move.


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