My mom tells me that I didn’t start walking, I started running.
My first attempt at organized running was junior high track. My memories are a little fuzzy on what exactly I ran but I do remember the hurdles at one point. What was I thinking???
Next was high school cross country. I was slow and injured all the time. I had physical therapy for years as I tried to figure out why my back hurt so much when I ran. During State one year I had a leg injury and it was wrapped so people knew I was injured as I limped across the finish line dead last. The crowd cheered…I was so embarrassed proud to finish because I only stayed in the race so we could finish as a team. No one bothered to tell me that one of my teammates had already fallen out of the race.
After high school running became sporadic in my life. I would go out for a jog occasionally but didn’t sign up to run in any local races. Then I started to run a little more to help with my fitness level and weight loss. In 2007 I signed up for my first race and it was a half marathon! Nike+ sponsored 13.1 miles and the proceeds benefited the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, a charity that is near to my heart. I ran against people all over the country using our ipods to log the race. I followed Hal Higdon’s half marathon training and slowly worked up my average 3 to 5 miles per run to the high of a 10 mile run the week before the race. The half marathon was tough for me and I swore I would never do it again. Never say never, I guess!
Fast forward a few years, a husband and two children later and I decide to sign up with Team in Training for a full marathon. Team in Training is a program that helps people to train for an endurance event and in return all of the participants help to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. What a wonderful experience and a fantastic way to train for a first marathon. I completed the 26.2 miles just 10 months after my daughter was born.
Currently I am training for my 6th half marathon and working on adding a little speed to my running. This includes interval and tempo runs each week. I’m running 5 days a week, incorporating strength training 2-3 times a week and tossing in a bike ride every now and again for a little cross training. It’s working! I’m getting a little faster and losing most of that stubborn baby weight. I’m also trying to eat healthier and this includes attempting to cut out processed foods. It’s very challenging but worth it for my health and the health of my family.
What’s next? I’m looking forward to running the 2014 Chicago Marathon. It will be my second marathon and one I’ve been looking forward to running for years!