You see, last year, I gave myself a very unusual 26th birthday present. I wanted to give myself the gift of health. I have a sweet tooth the likes of which is rarely seen (random fact: I also still have a baby tooth! I think that's the sweet tooth.) and committed to 1 month of healthy eating. Not necessarily to lose weight, although that was the end result, but to begin a new road in which I respected and cared for my body a heck of a lot more than I was doing.
That was one year ago. In that year, I have lost 40 pounds and finished a marathon. On June 11, 2011, I went to my first practice with Team in Training in Central Park. I couldn't run a continuous mile and had committed to finishing a marathon in under 6 hours.
And I did it.
|I just want to sit down!|
Full disclosure - I'm writing this post a few days early (March 13th) because I have a heck of a weekend coming up, not in the least the NYC Half Marathon. I've been nervous about the race - nervous about the points where it will get hard. The times where it will get real and I'm really really really going to want to stop. But regardless of my time, it will be a Personal Record for me in innumerable ways. I will celebrate the completion of my 26th year with another amazing accomplishment that one year ago, no one, including myself, thought I could do.
This is my second half marathon - the first one I completed was in the fall of 2008, and I did the least possible amount of training to be able to finish. And while I finished, it wasn't something I was particularly proud of. I had shied away from so much of the training, afraid that if I pushed myself I would find myself unknown territory. I was scared of stepping up to the line with a dream and a goal and a fire in my gut, knowing full well that there was a chance that I would disappoint myself. I lived a lot of my life that way, and this past year has been a journey through that unknown reality once you push past your comfort zone and start to realize that your limits aren't even close to what you thought they could possibly be.
So, to conclude, I'm offering up some terrible race pictures to the birthday gods to remind myself that we DO get better as we get older.