Who Are Your Running Friends?

I’ve had a lot of changes recently and not ones that I like. So it got me thinking, you have your friends and then your running/workout friends. I have my friends and most of the are also my running/workout friends but most of the time they are 2 different groups of friends.

I was reminded of this today when I saw a post of someone who said they ran by themselves. But are we ever really alone when we run? There’s a support group that is supporting you that doesn’t run every single run with you. There is a group of friends that just does not get it as well. They are the ones that usually ask the questions of why do you do this and if a marathon is how long?. I mean really?! But not everyone is into this running thing as we are, I get that. But still don’t you think that everyone knows that a marathon is 26.2 miles?!

This year has been so different for me, and even though I’m training for marathon #5 and #6, it’s still new to me. And I don’t have the the support I have taken for granted. Only a few people know of the new struggles I’m facing and most of those people are not anywhere near me. They are what I call my virtual running buddies. I’ve maybe met them for 5 minutes or spent a weekend with them, but they don’t live near me. I have a few that do and am so lucky that they share in my obsession of running. And even my friend this morning claimed to say that I’m the one that made her sign up for her first marathon. HAHA. I don’t remember signing her up and saying “hey, you’re doing this with me.” but we are such good friends that I’ll take it and glad to say that I’m glad to have her along for the ride. One of my best running friends and best friends forever lives in Missouri! That’s 800 miles from where I am!

But without these friends, virtual or not, I don’t know if I would be the runner I am today. I mean for the ones that don’t live around me to text me and ask how I am or to offer support when they have spent maybe all of 5 minutes at the finish line of a race with me. I can’t complain. I’ve made lots of good running friends through social media and they have help make me the person I am today.

Who do you credit with helping you become the person you are today, runner or not?

Marine Corps Marathon Weekend

Well it’s been almost a month since my first fall marathon! It’s hard to believe that it was that long ago. I have to say that this was one of the most awful experiences of my life but also one of the best.

Let me start off by saying that it was absolutely awesome FINALLY meeting @stlrunnergirl aka Kristin in person (you call follow her adventures here and here). We clicked right away and we set off to have a blast for the entire weekend. We were able to have lots of fun and enjoy getting ready for the race while she was here.

We both ended up taking over an Instagram account, Inspiring Women Runners, and we enjoyed every bit of showing our weekend for everyone to see. We got a lot of comments on our behind the scenes photo of our flat runners.

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Anyways, race morning was like perfect weather. mid 50s with a high that day being in the 80s, yuck! Kristin and I got to the start line no problem. We were waiting around with everyone else and all the anxiety. We both were injured during our training, so we knew that this marathon would be tough but we could trudge through.

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The race started and I was in charge of our run/walk intervals. We were set up to run 3 minutes and walk 2. We were feeling great and we made it through mile 4, the hill up Spout Run, ugh that hill. We continued on and Kristin was being a champ! I in the mean time, not so much. I started to cramp up in my legs and by this time in the day it started to get warm. We hit the blue mile which is always emotional. After that I was walking more than running. Luckily Kristin was there to help me and when we would try to run, my calves just weren’t having it. We were on the Mall by now, and every medical tent I saw, I wanted to stop and have them take me to the end. I was almost crying, and so ready to give up. Kristin was there and telling me that I couldn’t. But I so wanted to, every step was agony.

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At one point, I stopped by the medical tent and asked for salt. I ended up eating every bit of salt that was left in the bottom of a pretzel bag along with the pretzels. Kristin was being such a trooper with my negative Nelly attitude. We ended up walking the rest of the way and I have to say that she was right, the out and backs were insane. I was filling up my water bottle at most of the stops because I was going through water like crazy. We were literally counting down the miles and we made some new friends along the way.

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We finished the marathon, but it definitely wasn’t pretty! It was more like a survival. We both were like, never freaking again. I’m done with marathons and that’s it. But I still had one 2 weeks later. Are you kidding me….who’s bright idea was that?! We made it back to our hotel and I was texting with a few others that ran and found out that they came across the same difficulty. It was mind boggling that others had the same issues and hit the same troubles around mile 10. I was definitely glad to hear that I was not the only one.

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It wasn’t long after the race was over, that I started talking about a redemption race and having to run the Marine Corps Marathon again to redeem this last marathon I had with them. I could not let that marathon be the end all be all. True runner fashion!

So, what did I do, I signed up for the Chicago Marathon lottery. I told a friend of mine that I had signed for the lottery and he goes, “I thought you swore of the 26.2 mile distance.” Yeah well, never trust what a marathoner says after the most horrendous 26.2 miles. 🙂

Insta Friends to Real Life Friends

So I started this blog over a year ago and last year the post went a lot better than this year. I don’t know, I just feel I’m not as interesting. I promise to change that as the year goes on. 🙂

We all have those friends that we know by their user name and come to look for interaction with. I have met some really awesome and wonderful friends, who I have not met yet because we met on social media but I hope that changes sooner rather than later.

I don’t know exactly when we became friends, friends, but I do know this past January I was IG stalking one of my most come to be known awesome friends as she was getting ready to run the Dopey Challenge at Walt Disney World. Stlrunnergirl! I feel like that’s a superhero name! Anyways, I direct messaged her for her last name asking for her last name so I could track her during her races. I know, stalker right? But by this point I had followed her training and told her that she had this, and all of this too! She kindly obliged and I tracked all of her races. Not to mention, she did phenomenal! And I’m totally jealous that she has done Dopey! It’s on my bucket list. Not to mention we found out that we have the SAME first name spelled exactly the same way!!! That NEVER happens!

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A few weeks later here in Virginia, we got SLAMMED with snow. I was dog sitting so I had to clear the driveway and sidewalks so the family didn’t get hit with some fines. Mind you we got 36ish inches of snow. And yes, you read that right, 36ish. While I was over at this house we were talking constantly through the direct message from IG. We quickly learned that neither one of us were harmful and I shared my number with her. I shared lots of pictures of the snow, and boy there was lots of it to share. It literally took weeks to melt and took several days for some roads to see plows. But I still talked to my friend @stlrunnergirl.

It’s been a few months and since then and we continue to text daily! And by daily I mean that we are talking throughout the day. From sun up to past sun down. I know right. I even somehow convinced her to sign up for the Marine Corps Marathon Lottery. Which we both got in, and that will be the first time that we actually meet in person! I’m so excited for that. Kristin has been an amazing encourager and supporter for all of my events throughout the year so far. I mean she event told me that she was going to run 10 miles virtually while I ran my 10 mile race without training!!!! Who does that?

I’m so grateful that I’ve met Kristin. She’s been one in a million with encouraging me and helping me through my tough running times. I’m so grateful that she agreed to come out and run the Marine Corps Marathon with me. She’s a true friend and I can’t wait to meet her in person.

Do any of you all have a friend from social media that you can’t wait to meet?

 

Whole New Level of Crazy

I know it’s been a few weeks, months, maybe years (kidding) since I’ve written. My life has been pretty crazy so I needed to take a step back and work through the stress and then jump  back here to fill you all in. So don’t hate me too bad! 😀

You all know that I’m having this awesome adventure this November and running the Original Marathon in Athens, Greece. You can read all about that here. I can’t wait for that and to be over there and running. I know I’m going to get tears when I finish because the finish line is in the 1896 Olympic Stadium. How cool is that?!

Well this is where the crazy comes in. I was talking with my friend K who had signed up for the NYC Marathon lottery. She was looking for a fall marathon that was a stand alone event to see what she could do without having other races around that day. So we waited and waited and sadly she did not get into NYC. Big Bummer! As we were texting back and forth she came to the decision to register for the Marine Corps Marathon lottery. I kept telling her to try because even if she did not get in, then there was the bib transfer process (Love this about the Marine Corps Marathon!). So she should just decide to come on out and stay with me and run the Marine Corps Marathon!

After much decision, she decided to do it. So that got me thinking. I have Athens on 13 November. Awesome right? Well Marine Corps Marathon is 30 October. Ok perfect, no problem. Never done a marathon 2 weeks apart. No problem, new challenge, Great. Well that would also qualify me for Marathon Maniacs! So yes, I totally entered the Marine Corps Marathon lottery too! Luckily the lottery is only open for a week and they let us know on 31 March if we were going to be running with the Marines or not. Whoop Whoop…I made it. I was selected to run with the Marines!! My friend K was also selected! Double Whoop!

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I qualified for half fanatics last year. Go me! So if I complete this years challenge and run the 2 marathons 2 weeks apart, I’ll get my Marathon Maniacs AND Double Agent status. Now I’m not winning any races, I just want to finish! get those medals and have awesome experiences.

So here’s to the training, and entering a new level of crazy!

I did it! I conquered my 2nd 26.2 Miles!

This weekend was a whirlwind blast. I can’t believe that I conquered another 26.2 miles. After my first marathon 2 years ago, I made it to 20 miles and cursing every step after that. I was thinking, WHAT IN THE WORLD DID I GET MYSELF INTO. I’m so not doing this again. HAHA. Well we all know to never say never.

Earlier this year, I signed up for the TCS NYC Marathon lottery. I was one of the lucky few to get in. And again, I thought, What in the world did I get myself into. But then again NYC Marathon is a HUGE race. I had plenty of time to train and get in the right mental attitude. And boy did this marathon creep up on me before I knew it.

I trained, I got lazy, I got back in my running shoes, and started training again. I ended up feeling less than confident in myself and had to keep reminding myself that I will be ok. My longest run was 17 miles. I wanted to finish between 5-6 hours. I didn’t know what was going to happen to be honest. There was lots of wishful thinking and hoping that I would be just fine. I’m not out there to win the race or break any records. I am out there to enjoy the crowd and have fun with it.

I finished the race (I’ll have a race recap in a few days). I got my medal! I got my NYC Marathon Medal! It was a fantastic experience! Now to rest, get through next week and then start working towards the next goal. I placed my medal up on my special medal rack last night and it was a glorious moment. A sense of accomplishment.

My Disney and Marathon Medals

My Disney and Marathon Medals

My 2 Marathon Accomplishments

My 2 Marathon Accomplishments

What are you working towards next?

1 week…

1 week to go before I officially start my NYC Marathon training. 7 days. I have the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler on 12 April so that will be a great end to my first week of training. YAY! I was talking with M last week and sharing my racing schedule and how “packed” it is. She wanted to know which races I had in September/October and wanted to join! I love when I get to run races with other runners and friends. From 5k to halfs or even the only other full I’ve done was with someone else. It’s more fun with friends! I even roped in a few for the Color Run when it stops here in May! One of the most fun races ever!

Last week many of my friends got the ever awesome email that let them know they were selected to run the 40th Marine Corps Marathon on October 25, 2015! I’m so excited for them and so sad at the same time that I won’t be joining them. NYC is the week after so that is taking the priority. I will most likely still be at the finish line cheering everyone on since I plan to run the 10k that they put on that day. I’m crazy but not crazy enough to run 2 marathons within a week.

My planning (yes I’m a planner) for NYC is almost done. I have the train tickets and hotel. I just need restaurants and things to do. I won’t be doing many things besides the expo and seeing some sights. I can’t wait to experience it. This will probably be the only time I run NYC unless I travel up there for some halfs which would be fun. So many things to consider for the future. I may plan things but when it comes to training I am lazy and always start off great. I hope that I’m not lazy this time and can keep my poor mental attitude out of it. I have a good feeling about this though so we will see.

So here’s to the start of training and 215 days before I run in NYC!

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Bucket Lists

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Hey ya’ll we made it to Tuesday! We are on the right path towards the weekend!

I was talking with K the other day about bucket lists and what was on ours. I’ve split mine up into several lists. Something my Dad always had going was a list. I have a travel list, race list, personal list. I guess I could combine them, but this way I can keep them straight. I was making a comment how the NYC Marathon is a bucket list race and never in my wildest dreams was it in my radar before. I’m so glad that he encouraged me to sign up for the lottery and I was fully prepared to be disappointed. But shock and the oh my moment, of what did I do took over when I got the email that I had made it into the TCS NYC Marathon! But this got me to thinking what other races would be on my “Race Bucket List”.

I’ve run the Marine Corps Marathon, that was my first ever marathon. It was a great experience and I’d cherish the opportunity to run it again. I would love to run the Boston Marathon, but I’m so not fast enough to qualify. And right know, I would need to be a 80 year old woman and I would get in.  So to go to Boston, I would run with a charity and still be able to run one day. Of course, my list would not be complete without a few Disney Races. I would love to run all of them at some point. So they are all on my list. No surprise there. I’m sure there’s more that I’d love to run. My uncle is a master runner and I would love to do a race with him at some point. He’s always pulling in the awards. Big Sur maybe. I guess I need to write these down now and cross them off as I do them.

I have a “Places to Travel” list and there’s lots of place there I’d love to go to see. One place on my list would be Fiji. That would be a once in a lifetime opportunity and I would love to go to get away and not think about work for a few days, and really relax. Ireland, and Iceland would be great getaways. Germany during Oktoberfest! Maybe a trip to the mountains. A cruise to the Caribbean, nice warm weather and food out the ears! So many ideas. We’ll see what happens. I always have a bug to travel. And am always looking for the next adventure. I need to write these down as well.

It looks like I have some things to do and lists to make. What is on your bucket list?

Cheers! 💜