On February 1, 2011, I decided to get my health back. I let myself go after having two kids and knew I needed to make some big changes so I changed my diet, got a gym membership and started to run like Forrest Gump. I fell in love with running. That ‘runners high’ is no joke! You have to understand, I’ve never been an athlete and don’t have a lot of rhythm so this is something that didn’t come natural to me.
It took a ton of self motivation and a few key cheerleaders along the way but within a year I lost 20 pounds and 6 inches from my waist. Whoop! It’s been a little over a year and because of running, I know I’ll never let myself go again.
Last October & November I ran a couple 10k races so in 2012 I wanted to push myself even more. A gal from the gym I go to approached me about a month ago and told me she was putting a team together for a local raced called, “Run Rocklin.” The options I had were a 5K or 12k so I figured, go big or go home right!?!? 12 of us started training for the 12k. It was great to have others to train with and push each other to improve our times.
All 609 runners gathered at the starting line and at 8am that gun went off and the race was on. All of the training led up to that morning. There is this massive surge of adrenaline you get when waiting to take off. My stomach was in knots and I was praying I wouldn’t have to make a pit stop along the way.
Mile one is cake, then I realized that I had 6.45 miles to go and the battle of the mind begins. I kept telling myself “RUN” and yelling at my legs to go faster. Miles 2, 3, 4 and 5 go by with the help of a great playlist, and great views on the course. This course was seriously a whole lot more up hill then it was down hill. Goodness!! At about 5.5 miles, I had a total moment with myself, I went into this ugly cry. It hit me that I was about to go farther than I’d ever run in my whole life before and I WAS going to finish. I’m sure people around me thought I was nuts, but in that moment it was MY race. I was pushing myself to do something that a year prior seemed impossible. When I saw mile marker 7, I really shifted gears and took off as fast as I could go. THEN, I saw the ballons, the finish line!!! I told my stiff thighs, sore legs, burning calves and blistered toes that this was it! Shifted gears one more time and took off in a sprint, or at least what felt like one. I crossed that FINISH line after 7.45 miles in 1 hour 8 mins and 21 seconds. I managed to keep a 9:10 minute mile. Double whoop!!!
I write this not to brag because I saw people twice my age passing me, it is VERY humbling. I write this to inspire you to do something you think is impossible! Sign up for a race with a cause you believe in and push yourself to the max. You will be amazed with yourself, which is one of the most amazing feelings.
Have you been thinking about running a race? How do you prepare yourself?