For the last 4 months, my amazing friends & family (and especially my hubby) have been putting up with my relentless posts, tweets, conversations & training for this half marathon. I feel a little silly because there are MILLIONS of people out there that run half marathons & marathons and even ULTRA Marathons (50-60KM) and don’t go on and on and on about it like I did.
I just wanted to take a minute to explain why it was such a big deal for me to run this baby:
- For my whole life, I’ve had anxiety issues with exercise (see here for full post) so part of me did it to show myself that I COULD.
- I did this race 100% for myself. I didn’t do it to impress anyone, I didn’t do it to make someone proud of me, I did it for ME. I think I can honestly say for the 1st time in my life, this was the case.
- I needed to clear my head and rid myself of anxiety. The past 6 months have been pretty crazy and I needed an outlet. Zumba is a great workout, but doesn’t allow me to “escape”. I knew running would help me with that.
- I wanted a challenge. I knew I was capable of already running 5K and 10K (I’ve done so in the past) so I thought I’d go to the next level.
All this aside, it was really all to prove to me that I am capable of anything I set my mind to. I’ve been told that I could my whole life, but never believed it.
So, from December 28 to April 20, we trained. We trained in snow, sleet, rain, wind, extreme cold, you name it, we ran in it (in retrospect, training in winter might have been a BIT ambitious, but it didn’t matter because we did it anyway). Thanks to my amazing run buddies, we did it all with a smile on our face.
Then: RACE DAY. It was almost like the morning of my wedding. Something you’ve been waiting for, for what seems like an eternity, and it’s finally here. I was all nerves and energy. When we started the race, it took everything I had not to sprint ahead with the rest of the runners (who finished with a time of 1:40 or something silly like that).
I’ll spare you the minute to minute details of the whole run, but to give you an idea, I can sum it up in one word: HILLS. Goddam HILLS. Just as you were catching your breath from one hill, you were on to the next one.
At 10K we said “eff it” and walked UP the hills. We were probably going to same speed we would be going if we tried to run up them anyway. At least, when you go up, you usually got to run down.
At about 15K, it didn’t matter if I was going up or going down, my body was protesting.
At 16K Mom and Jon were there cheering us on and taking pictures. Same at 18K.That added a really nice boost (and also accounts for the money shots, like below)
|That look right there, that’s delirium.|
At 20K, we were almost there. The end was in sight…At the top…of another hill. Luckily for us, Angie’s boyfriend came galloping down the hill and yelled “GO ANGELA, GO LISA” and helped push us to the bottom of the hill. Angela turns to me and says “We can’t stop, we have to just run up the hill” then, we heard a loud “WHOOOOOP” and saw our Dad clamoring down the hill and yelling “You’re so amazing, you’re almost there” and looked so redonkulously happy that I couldn’t help but laugh and trudge up the hill.
Then…it was there. Less than 200 meters away. The Finish Line. I grabbed Angies hand and we ran like “hell” (I use this term loosely because we were most likely moving at a fast shuffle, but nevertheless, it felt like we were moving at top speed).
When we crossed that finish line, I have never experienced the feeling that I had in that moment. Tears of joy filled my eyes when they presented us with our medals. I was happy, sad, proud, tired, entergized, amazed, confused…I was like a teenage girl all over again.
Then…our amazing team of friends and family piled on us. I was presented with TWO bags of ketchup chips (TWO!!!) and hugged until my arms were sore. My fave little munchkins gave us this amazing picture:
This brought on another whole wave of emotion as I realize how lucky & blessed I am to have such amazing people in my life to be there and support me. My running guru (AT) had finished the run with a CRAZY amazing time and was waiting for me and we hugged and cried together and went “Holy sh*t, that was hard”
All in all…this was an experience I will never, EVER forget. If you have a fear…go out there an conquer it. I promise you, it will change your life as this did mine.
Finally, I want to thank each and every one of my amazing friends on FB & twitter for never telling me to “Shut the Eff Up Already” about my posts every week. Thank you for supporting me and telling me I could do it. I truly cannot thank you enough.
I promise I will now shut the eff up already about it 🙂