Say YES!

July 30, 2012

My Running

I feel so overwhelmed with intense feelings of gratitude, inspiration, motivation, and awe. As I have stated in recent posts…I never trained for a half marathon. I’ve done them. I’ve completed them. And I’ve run in misery from miles 5–13, only reaching happiness at the finish line. Which made me sign up for another one. Which I did not train for. Which I ran in misery. And thus the cycle continued. The very painful cycle. Painful physically AND mentally.

I signed up with Team in Training in May to train for the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in October, 2012. I wasn’t sure I could commit. I wasn’t sure I would follow through. I wasn’t sure I could raise the money. Fear filled me. Fear of dropping the ball….as history has always shown. But my niece told me “YOU CAN DO IT EASY!”. She had raised money for Team in Training and ran a full marathon in Seattle. I still had some doubts, but her energy made me think that maybe….JUST MAYBE…..

So I began training. I committed to a Tuesday run with friends. I showed up to ALL the TNT practices except for a few. I noticed running didn’t just become easier…but I became happier. I noticed that running wasn’t just exercise…it was also mental workouts for me. I began to smile more. I began to look forward to the next run. I was someone who was always my own worst enemy…but I started cutting myself a break. I started telling myself I was getting better. I started telling myself I am doing the best I can. And I was becoming happy with any run I had completed. Who was this new person taking over within my mind????!!!

During one of the Tuesday run with friends a half marathon in July was mentioned and I said right away “Oh I wouldn’t be ready for that…I’m training for one in October. July is too soon”. My friend told me to think about it. I lied and said I would. But she had planted a seed. Could I do it? After all, I was running more….I was getting trained…I was getting guidance and encouragement from running coaches…I was going to boot camp…..And at that time July was still months away….could I??

So I said ok. And registered.

I completed that half marathon yesterday and I keep thinking how close I came to robbing myself of one of the most rewarding experiences of my LIFE.

20120730-155502.jpg

As I said I was always miserable between miles 5–13. And being this Half was in San Francisco, I expected that it would be tough. Brutal. Impossible. But good “practice” for the one in October that would also be taking place in San Francisco. So I went with the mindset that this was going to be practice and definitely no PR set. My journey in becoming my own friend was letting me off the hook of the idea that I had to do better than I had ever done. I was excited that I would be running hills and would be getting an idea of what to expect for October. Plus this was a weekend with friends and was going to be fun. And it was!!! I had SO MUCH fun hanging with them. Running the Golden Gate Bridge was absolutely mind-blowing.

20120730-160510.jpg

But that was not the best part of the race. After running the bridge, I had lost track of the mileage because there were no mile markers on the bridge. Coming out of the bridge, there was a hill. A HILL??!! Don’t they know we just ran the bridge??? So ok, made that hill with no major problems. The training with TNT was kicking in at this point with our hill training. I imagined myself running with my group at one of our practices, and I imagined myself meeting up with all of them after the run. I looked at my Runkeeper app on my phone and it said my mileage was 9.78 and I knew that wasn’t right because I kept losing signal on the bridge. I knew my Runkeeper app was messed up at this point. I rounded the corner and that is when I experienced my best moment of my race.

20120730-161512.jpg

When I rounded the corner and saw this mile marker, I laughed and said out loud, “Are you fucking kidding me??!!”. I was at Mile 10, and still feeling good????? I was at Mile 10 and I wasn’t dying? I wasn’t miserable? I wasn’t quitting? I wasn’t crying? Mile 10??? SERIOUSLY???? And my head hadn’t set out to attack me yet?? HUH????!!!!

I was at Mile 10!!!!!!!!!!! At that moment I felt like a helium balloon and felt like I was floating. I was at Mile 10!!!!!! I was happy. Strong. Happy. Happy. Happy. And THAT was my very best, most memorable moment of my race. A moment I will never ever forget. So on I went….I knew the finish line would be coming up soon and that far into the race….we should be hitting downhill the rest of the way!

Wrong. It was incline after incline. Finally at mile 12 I was beginning to lose steam. I began to walk a little more on those hills. Between miles 12–13 those hills began to feel tough. Brutal. Impossible. At mile 13 I wanted to quit!! Instead I ran full throttle into the finish. And I screamed “woooooo!” as I went through. I got my medal and after they put it around my neck….I began to sob.

Because the way I felt at mile 13, I had usually felt at mile 5. And I knew I owed this awesome experience to Team in Training. I knew it was because of Team in Training I had been able to run these hills. I knew Team in Training had truly started changing my life. And this isn’t even the run I’m actually training for!!! And I cried because I was overwhelmed with gratitude.

Team in Training didn’t give me a magic pill. They didn’t give me special shoes. They didn’t give me any shortcuts. They gave me their experience. They gave me their time. They gave me their confidence. They gave me their hope. They changed my life. But I can only get out of it what I put into it. If I give them my all, they give me their all. And at the end of this race, I felt like a helium balloon….just floating with happiness.

If you could have been there for my very first half marathon, and every half after that…you would see what a difference TNT has made. My very first half marathon in San Francisco had a finish time of 3:30. This one I was expecting to finish around 2:50. So imagine my burst of extreme happiness when I crossed at 2:38.

I heart TNT. I heart my Tuesday running friends. I heart my life. And I heart ME.

20120730-163210.jpg

Yes, Feet….you did good. :-)

Advertisements
, , , , , , , , ,

About rsouleret

I am a mother of two beautiful girls. I work full time. And I run. ILML.

View all posts by rsouleret

Subscribe

Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

5 Comments on “Say YES!”

  1. melvisx Says:

    Great job! I felt the same way about the hill after the bridge, and I’ve done this race before!

    Reply

  2. melvisx Says:

    I’m in the central valley. Next up for me is the Big Sur 1/2 marathon in Monterey. Beautiful course along Monterey Bay

    Reply

    • rsouleret Says:

      We were just talking about that at work!!! I’m doing the Nike Women’s Half marathon in October. Might be too soon to do Monterey in November. But I saw the pictures and it looks really beautiful!!

      Reply

      • melvisx Says:

        They have a couple of shorter distances ;) If the Women’s half is as hilly as the SF 1/2, monterey may be too soon. It has some long steady inclines, not steep, but long

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: