Three years ago today, I ran my first 5K.
I’d been bitten by the running bug. A few months earlier, I’d run the Gate River Run – a 15K and a huge deal here in my hometown. I loved it, and I wanted more. So on a whim, I decided to train with a Galloway group for a half marathon. I was almost entirely driven by my desire for a 13.1 magnet on my car. No lie.
Earlier that summer, as I sat down at my computer to register for the Galloway half marathon training program, my eyes kept wandering to the little check box next to the full marathon training program.
The thoughts running through my head went something like this:
A marathon? Are you crazy?
Dude, just stick to the half marathon. It’s only a few miles longer than the 15K & you’ll get the magnet.
But the full marathon training only costs a little more than the half.
So? That has nothing to do with the fact that you’re not going to be able to run a marathon.
But maybe I can. What about those girls from my sorority? They did it.
But they’re not you. You don’t like to wake up early or sweat or pee in the woods.
Maybe I can sign up for the full, train for the half, and see what happens.
You’re wasting your money.
Shut up, a-hole.
Anyway, back to July 4, 2012. I was going to start training for a marathon in a couple of weeks. And since that would make me A Runner, I figured I’d better start running. I finished the 5K in 28:56, with a 9:20 pace. (That’s my PR, since it’s the first and only official 5K I’ve ever run.) When I got home, my daughter had made this for me:
A couple of weeks later, I started training for a marathon, and a whole new world opened up for me. But that morning in July, I had no idea what was in store for me.
I didn’t know that I’d get that 13.1 magnet and then lose it in a car wash – but that I wouldn’t mind because I had a 26.2 magnet to replace it.
I didn’t know that 3 years later I’d have run 5 half marathons and 2 full marathons, and that I’d be getting ready to start training for my 3rd marathon.
I didn’t know that I’d have a blog, let alone a running blog, and I couldn’t have imagined the opportunities that are unfolding for me because of Mommy Runs It.
And I didn’t know about the friendships that I’d make along the way – friendships with these incredible women and men who’ve seen me at my strongest and at my most vulnerable. Friends with whom I’ve discussed everything from pole dancing to David Beckham to diarrhea and so much more that you really, really don’t want to know.
[Tweet “What have you learned since your first race? #runchat #sweatpink #girlsgonesporty”]
Happy 4th of July, my friends. I’m going to spend the day with my family – we’re going to fly kites, have a picnic, and watch some fireworks.
But first I’m going for a run.
What were you doing on July 4, 2012? What do you hope to accomplish by next July 4?
p.s. My dad just correctly pointed out that 7/4/12 is two years ago, not three. But it was three July 4ths ago, and I hadn’t had coffee when I wrote this. xoxo
So glad to meet another Jacksonville girl! 🙂 I’ve been here since 1999. I’ve only run the Gate that one time – in 2013 I was still in too much pain from the marathon, and in 2014 I was out of town. Maybe I’ll get to do it again in 2015. You should definitely consider running the Donna – at least the 13.1! It’s a really phenomenal experience.
Jacksonville is my home town too and I’ve run Gate River Run in 96 and then in 13 and 14! I haven’t tackled the marathon distance yet, somehow those 20+ mile training runs still freak me out! Thanks for linking up with us!!
MCM Mama (@mcmmama) says
Great job! You’ve come a long way since that first 5k!
Thanks for joining our link up. Hope you’ll join us next week when we talk about running on vacation!
Thanks for hosting such a great link-up! I just added my link. And I can’t believe it’s taken me a whole week to respond to your comment. :/
Neatly-Packaged (@Neatly_Packaged) says
This is amazing!! 🙂 you go girl!!
Aw, thanks. If I can find enough motivation to do it, anyone can. 🙂
EB @ Running on E says
Great post! I love the internal convo. We can all relate to that. 🙂
Thanks! Sometimes those internal conversations happen out loud. Often in the grocery store, for some reason. 🙂
Deborah @ Confessions of a Mother Runner says
Wow you’ve really accomplished so much in those 2 years of running-very impressive indeed. And we all do things for the magnets!
How many magnets is too many? Asking for a friend. 😉
Jennifer LE (@runningwithpugs) says
July 4, 2012 was spent watching fireworks with my family. July 4 of last year, I was recovering from my tonsillectomy (I was only 4 months into running at this point). And this year, I did a training run for my first marathon, and then spent the day with family. It’s amazing how things progress!
Hope you had a wonderful day!
Woohoo…marathon training! Are you training for Disney?
I am so proud of you and you should be very proud of yourself, too!! XOXO
Thanks, Mama. <3