It makes me think back to why I started running. To be honest, I hated running. And there are days I still hate running. When I was a teenager and those hormones got all whacked I would take my Walkman (it was really hard to manage) and take off running. Then, like Forrest Gump I would just stop on the bike path after about a mile and turn around. It was enough to calm me down. But to actually be honest I really had no desire to put on tennis shoes and "go for a run." In college, a few people from my dorm would go for a run in the middle of the night down Willamette Blvd. I was always one of the last people in, but it was a group and exercise. The treadmill was something I hated. I could handle the eliptical, but nothing felt "right." After I graduated I would take the puppy for a "run" after getting off the night shift so he would get tired and sleep all day. Then I broke my leg, and it seemed as though all athletic ability I had went out the window. Then I gained weight, lost it and then had a baby. The weight never seemed to have come off easily after that. It was tough. One day I looked at my husband and asked him to help me run.
It was tough, I hated it. I panted, I hurt and most importantly I couldn't seem to find clothes to workout in that felt right. We live on a hill, and it started with just half mile treks. Telephone poles became my new "just get to that point" and you can walk. So E would look at me and encourage me. He never gave up on me and pushed me to push myself. Then I did my first 5k, and I felt good about myself and what I had finally accomplished. Then my first 10k. Soon miles began to pile on, and some weight came off. Then E gave me the encouragement to sign up for a half marathon. Soon he was deployed, and I decided to also sign up with Team in Training to run my first marathon. I was now surpassing E on what we could run.
Team in Training helped me push myself even further. When I ran my first half marathon, I had only run 7 miles prior to that. (I never was good at properly training). My goal was to run the first 7 miles, then I could walk the rest. But when I got to that point, it became a "next mile post" and then it came to well there is only 3 miles left I can do that. When it came to the full marathon it was Coach Karl that pushed me out of the nest at mile 25.5 telling me I had to do the rest on my own. And then I laid everything I had left on the pavement.
Now about 4 years after starting running, I am rethinking what I want from running. I am not great about training, I don't carve out time for training and I always feel really busy. But I want that to change. I want it to become more of a priority. I want the therapy it provides, the moments of serene bliss and satisfaction of knowing that I didn't give up. I want to show my daughter what being healthy is. I want her to see that "thunder thighs" aren't a bad thing, that they mean power and strength. That the large feet we have can take us further than we could ever imagine. I love being able to share something with her, and I love seeing her face light up when she completes a race. It doesn't matter whether it is a 1 miler or a 5k, it is the accomplishment that makes it worth it.
So my personal goals for this year is to improve on my training. I have the NYC Marathon to prepare for, and I am using it to make myself better both with nutrition and fitness. When I finish that race I want to be able to say I did everything I could. Now I just need to figure out how to do it. But for now, just getting through the next week is my current goal. I guess I should start packing. :)