Hey y’all! Thanks for joining me here on my blog! For the next eight weeks, I’ll be coming here with the good, the bad, the sweaty thoughts as I lead up to running my first full marathon!
First, a little background on this journey. I didn’t just wake up and decide to run a marathon in two months. Running the 2020 Austin Marathon is an event that has been a long time coming. I have always been an athlete; playing softball and volleyball, running for fun, and very involved with Crossfit in my late twenties.
About two years ago, I realized I no longer lived an athletic life. I decided that I didn’t want to give up the ‘I Am an Athlete’ portion of my identity. I worked with a holistic health coach, who is also a running coach. My goals were to run a 5k, maybe a 10k, and to lose some weight. We worked on the habits that built my mindset, and a consistent program to build up to being a well-fueled, confident runner. By going slow and steady, and working on my head game as much (probably more) than my physical game, I had a lot of success toward my goals.
The following summer, my sweet mother-in-law gifted me a month of training sessions with her personal trainer. I had been hearing such great things about him, and she had so much success, so I went for it. I rediscovered how much I love lifting heavy shit and competing against myself (as well as occasionally against other athletes in his gym!). I continued working on my mindset, as well as my healthy attitudes about food and body image. My trainer was incredible at supporting me as well as pushing me to a better version that I couldn’t even see yet. I shed so many tears in his gym, and grew to heal my disordered eating and love my capable, bad ass, strong body.
Fall of 2018 rolled around, and one of our best friends jokingly put out a post on Facebook to have people join him for a half marathon in January. I made some smart ass remark, and he simply asked, “Why not?” Damn it if I didn’t have a good answer. Within a week, I was signed up for the 3M Half Marathon as well as the Austin Half Marathon. Training got real, very quickly! Physically, my training went well for those first half marathons. My mindset was still a bit of a mess, however. I had built so many trap doors for me to be able to get out of the race. I honestly never really thought I would be able to run the races.
The turning point for me was my first half marathon in January 2019. I had some challenging personal circumstances before the race, and had every reason to bail out of it. I decided to celebrate life, celebrate all that my body can accomplish, and take the joy of finishing my first half marathon in over a decade! As I crossed the finish line, I cried holding my medal, collapsed my husband’s arms, and felt the strongest and happiest than I had ever felt.
After that day, I knew I was different. I knew that I could train and do anything. I knew how strong I could be. I knew that wasn’t the last race I would run, not even close. I run now to celebrate the joy of every day and the challenge of overcoming all the Hard Things that life throws our way. I run because I love who I am and the energy I am able to give others. I run because I can. Pushing myself, sticking to a training plan, healing physical and emotional injuries, I get to do all of that when I run. There is so much to do, to give, to gain, to love about running. I’m here for all of it, and for the next 8 weeks, y’all are too.