In honor of my new blog, I thought it might be important to write a post about how I got into running. It's been a much longer journey than this one six-month training program!
Back in 2005, I was dating this guy- he's now my Hubby so it's not weird that he's going to read this- and we were eating a LOT of, well, crap. We ate Wendy's on a regular basis and Dairy Queen was almost a nightly thing. I joke now with Hubby that he used to consider Doritos a side dish! Considering that I've battled with my weight for my entire life, this "lifestyle" (if you can call it that) was a recipe for weight gain and disappointment in myself.
See, in the years prior, I had worked really hard and managed to lose over 100 pounds. I worked out with a personal trainer and ate a very clean diet. Vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains were my friends! I guess when you meet someone that you get comfortable with, you, well, can also get complacent. And that's what I did.
One random day, I saw something about Team In Training online and noticed that there was an informational meeting at the library close to my house. I attended the meeting and was immediately moved by what I heard. I could run a marathon, a half marathon, bike a 100 mile race, or complete a triathalon, all while raising money and awareness for blood cancers. I thought this would be a good way for me to lose some of my "relationship weight" and support a great cause.
I remember telling my Hubby about my plans. 'I'm going to run a marathon," I told him. "I guess you should probably go outside and run then," he responded. Umm..ok. But I had never run before. Sure, I'd played tennis and been a cheerleader in high school. I'd run the requisite three laps around the football field before practice, grumbling the entire time, always finishing last- but I had never tackled anything like this.
So I started to run. I lived by a little park with a little pond. I started by running around the pond once. Then, on a different day I ran around it twice, and so on. Eventually, I was running up to sixteen miles on trails!
And then it happened. I trained too hard, too fast and I got hurt. I developed a severe case of Plantar Fascitis in both feet. The marathon was just around the corner and I could barely walk, much less run. A doctor strongly urged me to stop training and try again next year. I sadly informed the TnT folks that I couldn't participate in the race and life went on.
I got married in 2006 and we moved to San Francisco. I had put on more weight- duh, I was married now- no need to worry about snagging a partner! I met this great friend, B, and she and I discussed starting Weight Watchers together. We also began walking every morning in Golden Gate Park. It was fun and we were able to start losing a little weight as well. One day, I started telling B about my marathon aspirations and she asked me if I'd ever consider walking the marathon. At that point, I knew she was on to something.
I contacted my old friends at TnT Iowa and asked if I could train for the upcoming San Diego Rock 'N Roll Marathon. They said they'd love to have me on their team (also I'd already raised all of my money so they wanted to me to benefit from that, at least). I started walking long walks on the weekends and realized that maybe a half marathon would be a better starting point.
In June, 2006, I went to San Diego with Hubby and I walked/ran the San Diego R 'n R half-marathon. I don't remember my time- I know it was slow- but who cares?? I'd done it! I was so proud of myself.
After finishing that race, I moved on to walk/run the San Francisco Half Marathon in 2007, the San Jose R 'n R Half Marathon that same year, and the Phoenix R 'n R Half Marathon in 2008. Hubby got inspired and did those races with me!
Flash forward to December 2008. I saw an ad for the San Francisco Marathon Training Program online and I was intrigued. I'd had a terrible year- seriously, 2008 can kiss it- and I was still struggling with reaching my goal weight on Weight Watchers. I talked to my parents and they agreed to pay for the training for me as a Christmas gift. What great parents!
So, I started training- to run a full marathon. I started with 2 miles, and now, as you can see from my last post, I'm on the verge of a 20 mile run. Has is been easy? No! Has it been fun? Heck yes! And, with each day the marathon grows closer and I get more and more excited. I cannot wait to cross that finish line and finally complete the goal that I set for myself back on that fateful day when I told my skeptical Hubby, "I'm going to run a marathon."