13.1 miles take two

Last week, a friend and I crossed the finish line of our second half marathon in 2012 on a brisk Sunday morning for the Strongsville Fall Classic.

Runners unite.
Instead of sleeping in, we were up early to join the all the runners while there was frost still on the ground and the sun was shining, making us think it was a lot warmer than it actually was.

After meeting who I'm going to call "Ruth," she shared that she was 76 and has ran 55 marathons in her lifetime. Fifty-five marathons, people! She was this absolute ball of energy who was so excited to be up with everyone to start what was probably her 56th half marathon if not more.

The only one her age bracket....
I started to think about why I started running (I'll use that term loosely) because I don't actually consider myself much of a runner. My reason is simple -  I started to run after my dad was diagnosed with cancer over five years ago and signed up for a half marathon that supported Multiple Myeloma research.

As a kid, I have memories of my dad leaving for a run with his Asics and navy hooded sweatshirt for what felt like forever, but in all actuality it was likely 40 minutes. But let's be real here - when you are kid, forty minutes feels like an eternity and my brother and I knew we could stay out that much later or get in trouble before he got back to yell at me for likely beating up my little brother.

Posing on front porch post summer run. Socks and jellies - the only way to go!

Fast forward to six years ago, my dad's "running career" was cut  a bit short because of his bionic leg surgery so I sort of thought, "Well, I guess I should start running because he can't anymore " and that's how I found myself signing up to run my first race. At the time, I was incredibly out of shape and needed some kind of motivation to get me moving again and regain focus that I had lost, so a friend and I signed up for our first half marathons. Plus, I didn't want to look back and think, "I wish I would've done that" or had any other regrets.

Let's get this show on the road!
A few years later, I find myself testing my physical and mental limits, to run faster and farther while bonding with friends during long runs or attending a weekly hot yoga session on Saturday mornings.
crossing the finish line
Considering I have three races under my belt, my goal for next year is to run two half marathons again, get my mile time down (because my dad said so) and join a team to complete the Tough Mudder in April. Who doesn't think a little electrocution, jumping off a 15-foot cliff into freezing cold water and crawling under barbed wire isn't fun on a spring afternoon?

So if you are thinking of starting to run, box, join Crossfit, sign up for a yoga retreat or take that bootcamp class, what are you waiting for?

If you need an extra boost of motivation, head over to my friend Kristina's blog, Strong and Glamorous, for her own personal transformation to competing in her first fitness competition while sharing healthy recipes and workout routines to get a behind like J.Lo. Like woah is right.


Heather said...

Awwwww.........love that picture on the front step!
And I totally want to do a Mudder, too - lmk and I'll join your team (if you let me)!!!

fabulouslytabitha said...

what a touching post! and thanks for giving me a little inspiration too. i am doing the cleveland 1/2 in may -- my first! definitely a little scared but mostly excited to accomplish this :)

raven said...

What a motivating post! I had been doing well with fitness and even did the Tough Mudder this last April - it's completely crazy, tough on your body, and an awesome experience to accomplish! good luck!! I essentially fell off the wagon on fitness and am just trying to get motivated again. I'm now considering signing up for a half! Thank you!

Katelin said...

aw nicely done! such a rock star!

Alana said...

awesome reasons to start running! props for running in the cold, too. that's my downfall!

Jessica (Bayjb) said...

Congrats on the race! Looking forward to following the next round of running adventures :)