Last year I found myself lost, lost in daily routine and daily life of the same thing. Mother, wife, work, mother, wife, work, day after day. I am not complaining at all, I am blessed to be able to say that I am a mother, a wife, and I am able to work. I take none of this granted please trust me on this. Somewhere in the daily hustle though I got lost, I wasn't sure who I was or what I was doing for myself. Which honestly was nothing. I started weighing some options for myself that would bring a little bit of a mix up for my daily life but would not shatter my small children's normal schedule. Did I want to learn a language? Or perhaps finally learn how to play the piano? or did I want to venture into something fitness related? One day after the kids got home from school I noticed that the High School Cross Country team runs through my neighborhood. Now running was something I always wanted to do but I saw my asthma as a way to hold me back from pursuing it truly. I mean honestly I used it as my excuse all 4 years of High School as my way to get out of running the mile in gym class each year. That was my last time running, sadly in the year 2000. So this running idea of mine seemed a little far fetched to say the least. I was jealous though of the cross country team, I wanted to run like that, I wanted to be able to run long distances to prove to myself that I can in fact do it.
I have always been a healthy person, I was always into yoga, or going for walks, I used to belong to the gym, and I eat a vegetarian diet. So for me the understanding and the science of running was very interesting to me. So in February of 2018 I registered my fist ever 5K Run for Animals race. It was scheduled for April 22nd giving myself exactly 8 weeks to get ready for this race. I followed the Couch to 5K training plan for 8 weeks and I made myself do it. My daughter was in Pre-K at the time and my son in 1st grade. My daughters school was from 12:30-3:00 Monday-Thursday. My goal was for the 2.5 hours she was in school was the time I was going to train daily and on the weekends. By the time my 8 weeks was up, I wouldn't necessarily say I was ready, but that was ok.
On race day I had absolutely no idea at all what to expect, I had no goal at all set for myself other than to finish it. It was so much fun, the energy was amazing, and not to mention the dogs running the race as well was motivation to keep going. I found my pack of people who run the same pace as me, also helping me feel less like I had no idea what I was doing. I did it though and it was so much fun! I was hooked after that first race. I then registered for a 5K in May & June, and 8K in July, a 10k in August but that ended up getting canceled due to a bad storm and lighnting. In the month of July I really wanted to push myself to see how far I can go to be the best me possible. I was searching online for upcoming races and I saw it...Half Marathon on October 20th in South Norwalk. The SoNo Half. Can I do that I thought? Am I crazy for even registering for this? So I threw caution to the wind and registered! My first ever HALF MARATHON! I am committed now! Thank you to Pinterest and all of the running blogs, I joined a fabulous page on Facebook for female runners called;
Run Like A Girl Community
This page is full of amazing and inspirational women all over the world. They give extremely helpful information and advice no matter what your question or concern is. Women with decades of experience and training to a newbie like me.
On the day of my half marathon I was very nervous. I knew that I was running with seasoned professionals with decades of experience. There were so many people running and I get overwhelmed in very busy places. When it came time to get in line and start this amazing race, I made a very newbie move and I placed myself too close to the front of the line not even thinking. You see in the lineup the seasoned runners run first and the slower runners towards the back of the line. That is where I belonged, oops. The countdown began and at the blow of whistle we were off. Once we started over the bridge and into downtown SoNo my heart started pounding and I began to have a panic attack. I had realized the mistake I made and where I had put myself in the lineup for the race. These runners are so fast! What have I done! I can't keep up, I can not run 13.1 miles, oh my goodness I have to quit I can not do this. This is motivational talk I am having with myself within 3 minutes of beginning of my very first half marathon. Not the best way to start by the way. I slowed down and started to walk a little until all of the seasoned runners went passed me. I can only begin to think of what they thought of me walking so soon in a 13.1 mile race. I had to though, my heart had to calm down and I needed to find my people, the ones who run the same pace as me. Once I did I had no more anxiety. If at any point from there on out that I felt like I needed to walk I knew it was ok because I wasn't the only one walking.
My husband was there for me as a major supporter and my "in case of emergency" person, lol. he was motivation and support for me throughout the entire race. He is from the town the race was in so he knew all of the roads and would randomly pop up unexpected through the race. Text messages of motivation from my mom popped up on my IWatch just at the right time. My goal again was just to finish and to do so under 3 hours, and I finished at 2 hours and 54 mins. I did it, I have no idea how I did it and went for 13.1 miles but I did. I completely felt like I was going to die and throw up at the end but at the same time I felt super human. I was and I still am proud of myself for putting myself out there and trying something so new and different from my normal life and routine. I suffer heavily from anxiety, panic attacks, and depression so running became a source of therapy for me. My mind will calm down and only thing that I think of is making it the next 5 feet and next 5 feet after that. I found that if I was having a really bad day full of anxiety and ran that day, even if it was just for 1 mile I would feel so much better about everything.
Now that some time has passed since my October race and life has calmed down a little I have decided to re-registered this year for all of the same races I ran last year, including the SoNo Half on October 19th, 2019. I want to beat all of my goals from last year and push myself even harder this year. Just know that You never truly are aware of what you are capable of until you try.