I did it.
I did it!!!
(I know I look like a hot mess, but I was flying high at this point)
Not only did I do it, I exceeded my own expectations.
As most of you already know, this past Saturday I ran and completed in my first 1/2 marathon.
I ran 13.1 flipping miles!!!
I am most proud to say I RAN EVERY STEP OF THE WAY!!!!
Since my training got sidetracked over the past two months, I went in giving myself a lot of leeway.
"It's okay to stop and walk."
"Your only goal is to finish."
"Walk the hills and run the rest."
"Don't worry about time.....just finish."
However, I took it slow and steady. By mile 8, I realized I hadn't stopped once and at that moment I knew I could do it. My mantra then turned to....
"One foot in front of the other."
"DO NOT STOP!!!"
And, I didn't stop. I ran every single step and every single hill.
Honestly, I'm more proud of that right there than I am of my time.
I cried beforehand from nerves. I cried while standing in my corral when my two best friends called to tell me how proud they already were of me, right at the moment I needed it most. I cried at mile 9 when it felt like my knees were going to give out and I couldn't go up one more hill (I went up another 5 after however). I cried at mile 11 when I saw my family for the first time. I cried when I saw the finish line just yards ahead of me.
(cue the tears at both of these moments)
Saturday, I knew what I had accomplished, but it hadn't quite sunk in yet. Sunday morning however, I woke up feeling way proud of myself. I woke up feeling like I could do anything. It's crazy to think that only nine months ago, I couldn't run a 1/2 of a mile and Saturday, I ran over 13!!!
I finally said out loud to someone the other day that this was such a big deal to me, not so I can say "I've ran a half marathon" but so I can say "I set a goal and I reached it." To be quiet honest, I feel like my twenties were filled with a bunch of unfinished business. I never finished college, I never had a "real" job, I wasn't cut out for foster care, I couldn't get pregnant again, and let's be honest, I couldn't even give birth like a normal person. Though yes, I married my best friend, have an awesome marriage and a beautiful daughter, in my own personal view, I felt like my twenties were filled with a bunch of failures on my part. The half marathon fell just one month and one day after my 30th birthday and it became a way to start off the new decade with the mind set that I can accomplish anything I work for.
So, it's more than just bragging rights, its a new start for me.
I know running is not for everyone, but can I tell you how it was such an amazing thing to be there with 5,000 other women all working for the same goal. I know each and every woman there had a story of their own and why they were there running. I mean, most people don't sign up to run 13 miles just because. I saw several women with shirts that said "I run ________." and they had their reasons written in. I think it would have been awesome to hand those out to every woman there.
(there were about 600 more women behind me)
And yes, I'd do another one in a heartbeat.
I may or may not have already thrown out the suggestion of two for next year. So, if you want to run one, call me.
I have a few thank yous to give out tomorrow and then I promise to stop all the half marathon talk....for now.