She came. She ran. She cried. but She finished.
September 1st I ran my first half marathon, The Rock and Roll marathon. I know what you're thinking "that sounds crazy"!
It was crazy. Crazy hard.
So back in February, a friend asked me to run this event with her. My immediate response was NO WAY! Then I kept thinking about the race, and the challenge. I quickly recanted my no and said "let's do it". I wanted to use the race as motivation to get back into my workout routine since I had not yet done so after my second child was born. I knew I had a few other friends that trained regularly for these things, so I got a training program from one of them and took ALL of the advice she had to offer. The longest distance I had ever ran before willingly was 6 miles. This was going to be a lot more....
Let the training begin.
If you don't know this about me already, I do not like winter, snow, or being cold for that matter. I did not begin my training in February because it was "too cold" even though I have a treadmill in a heated garage. I convinced myself that March was a better time to start, 6 months was plenty of time to train up to 13 miles. Most training programs start out with low miles and slowly build up the distance. I feel good with 3 miles, at this time. Once I began my training, I reminded myself that with new adventures come new challenges and adversity. One month into training I sprained my ankle- stepping off a curb.
I just barely misjudged the step and was on the ground before I knew it. Completely unable to put any weight on it. My husband had to throw me over his shoulder to get me to the car. Thankfully he is a strong fella! It was about a good week before the swelling went down, and a month before I was able to really run without pain. By this time we were putting our house on the market and all that comes along with it. Decluttering, staging and cleaning. SO MUCH CLEANING. Once it sold and we moved......the rest of summer was a blur. Time just got away from me and before I knew it, August came. I realized the mistake I had made. 30 days til I had to run 13 miles. I did not even have shoes yet!! (( I know....crazy))
So the week before the race I began to hydrate. With more than just coffee-because hair stylists live for coffee! I researched the best shoes to invest in and where to buy them. I looked into the best fuel to have for energy. I asked friends what I needed to know, and just went with it. I calculated exactly the pace I needed to maintain in order to finish in the 4 hour time limit. At this point, I just wanted to finish the race. I knew I was not going to set any records here.
FINALLY, RACE DAY WAS HERE. I slept in my race clothes so that when 430 am came and my alarm went off, I could just put on my socks and shoes, grab my bag and go. I ate a banana on the way and drank my liquid energy. I parked around 5 am and nervously stretched for 30 mins. I checked in with a few friends I knew would be there at 6, took a pic and started the race at 630 am. This is the second time this year I have waken up this early to work out. Never have I considered myself a morning person. I posted to my Instagram every mile, the mile marker and fun things along the way. I saw a lot of bands along the path-hence the name of the race. I saw people of ALL ages running and walking. I even saw a barefoot Elvis!
The weather was perfect, mild and 70's. The path had so much to admire and I truly think these 2 factor really contributed to me being able to do this at all. Well that and a little Beyonce and Lizzo!
I would be lying to you if I said it was easy. It was far from it. My toes were numb by mile 2. My right foot was in pain where I have a bunion by mile 5. My hips began to ache around mile 7. My left foot was in pain in addition to the right foot still hurting by mile 9. By mile 10, I was wondering where the shortcut was and thinking of all the ways I could get the police to take me back to my car.
But my mindset was motivating. "I can finish". I was at a great mile time pace to JUST finish, so I kept going. I kept telling myself that I could and would finish, and somehow my feet kept moving. It actually hurt more to walk than it did to keep shuffling my feet along. Once I saw the finish line, I knew my husband and my boys were waiting there for me and that became my energy! I pushed hard that last half mile- and crossed that finish line!! Suddenly I was overwhelmed with emotion- tears filled my eyes as I began to feel relief. I FINISHED! I bent down to lady right past the finish line so she could place my medal around my neck. Music still blasting in my ears, I looked at it and wobbled to my family.
Our mind is a powerful thing. When we TRULY get away from that fixed mindset and negative thinking, we are capable of incredible results.