I never thought I would call myself a runner. I used to say “I only run if someone is chasing me!” My husband has been a runner for quite a few years, and I have loved cheering him on for all of his marathons and half marathons. There’s something about the crowd that just makes you feel such pride for the people running!
My attitude changed. I saw a group sign up for my church that was a Couch to 5K group and I felt like I needed to sign up. So I tried- but it was full! So I emailed the leader of the group and asked to be on the waiting list- and guess what!?! They made the group bigger because so many people wanted in! So I was in!
At the time of the group, I was having a lot of health issues. I kept getting very ill and thought it was just food poisoning, but it wasn’t- so halfway through my training I scheduled surgery to have my gall bladder removed. Only I scheduled it after my vacations and my first race, lol! The doctor was ok with it, as long as I didn’t eat any fat. That’s HARD! But with the help of my mother in law, who we went on vacation with, I managed to not have any attacks while on vacation, and keep up my training.
My first race was hard, but exhilirating at the same time! I had a partner that I trained with and we ran together throughout the week and at our group meetings. So we ran at the same pace and kept each other going! Especially when we were about half way through and I told her I couldn’t get my breathing right and she reminded me to relax my shoulders- such a simple thing to do, but she knew that was a challenge I had- being tense! Getting through the first section of people was nerve wracking because everyone is going a different speed and we are just trying to keep going and set our pace together. But we did it! And when I told her I was in pain, she encouraged me to keep going. We finished faster than we thought we would! When we could see the finish line, she said let’s sprint to the end, and boy did we ever! I didn’t realize I had that much left in me but I just pumped my arms as fast as I could and booked it to the end! My husband told me he had me in view for photos and then all of a sudden I was gone!
It felt so good to finish that race! So I knew I wanted to sign up for another one and I knew which one I wanted to enter. It was the St. Louis Roc Star 5K that my old boss and his wife put on for ovarian cancer. So my friend trained in St. Louis while I trained here, and I drove there with my daughter for the race. It was a great race and I was hooked!
So for October of 2011 I decided to do a trail run, in costume, at Jerry Smith Pumpkin Farm. During a girls night out, it was decided that I would dress up as Punky Brewster, so I got to working on what I could wear and still run comfortably. It was a beautiful day and the race was more difficult than I thought! Running on grass is tricky and you have to keep a good eye on where your feet are going so you don’t roll an ankle.
Despite being careful, I was in a lot of pain by the end. My husband guess it was my old shoes so we headed to Brookfield to go to Fleet Feet for better shoes. I was fitted for shoes and inserts and kept on running!
When we decided to spend Thanksgiving in Pittsburgh, my husband suggested we run the Turkey Trot together and I thought that was a great idea! I ended up running alone because he had to stay with my daughter, but it was fun! It was definitely the most challenging as they have a LOT of hills! But I finished and was so proud of myself! Plus my mom and 2 sisters were there to cheer me on with my husband and daughter.
Thanks for reading my story! Tell me about how you started running, or what’s holding you back from starting to run!