In May I decided to set a goal: "By the end of summer, I will run a half marathon." What the hell was I thinking? Well, I made a goal to my self, and there was no way I was letting myself down again by not going through with it. So... I put on my running shoes, put my headphones in my ears, turned on "I'm Born to Run" by American Authors, and headed out the door.
10 minutes and 3/4 of a mile later, my body was drenched in sweat and I was breathing like I smoked 10 packs a day.
Fast forward to June. Honestly, after that first run, I said no way that I am going to be able to run this half marathon, so I should just give up now. But then, this funny thing came across my timeline on Instagram: "Run the Christmas in July Half Marathon." Now, who doesn't love Christmas in July? I mean it is the two best times of the year put into one. So, I took a leap of faith and decided to sign up for the race. I had around a month and a half to start training to somehow be able to run 13.1 miles without crawling over and dying after two miles.
So, again I put on my shoes, laced them up, put my headphones in, and went for a run. This time I was determined I had to do this now since I already signed up for the race. I worked my ass off for the next month, running either in the morning or late at night because the best part of summer is the amazing heat — something I always had to battle. Every day, when I would run, I would just try to run a little bit further each day.
The hardest thing I had to endure besides running was of course, with my luck, getting shin splints two weeks out from race day. I did what any person would do with shin splints — hate their life and give up. However, I pushed through! I took some time off from running, bought new shoes, and worked my ass off again to get back into it.
I had one week until race day. Imagine thinking about running 13.1 miles when you just sat on the couch and ate food for the last week. Impossible. I couldn't believe that I was going to have to try to do this. My anxiety was through the roof. My pride hurt from just thinking about not being able to finish this half marathon after everything that I had put into it. But, I did all I could do and started to run every day the next week.
Then came race day. July 14th, 80+ degrees by 8 am. Its was going to be a rough day, but everything I have been training for was finally going to pay off. I got to the race at 6 am walked to the starting line at 6:45 am. The starting gun went off at 7 am. There was no turning back the. The only way I was stopping was when my feet crossed over that finish line.
1 hour and 58 minutes later, I crossed that finished line with legs throbbing and wearing a shirt that you thought I just swam in. All that mattered at that point was that I did it. I completed my first half marathon in under two hours.
Make a goal for your self if its a half marathon or just simply run a mile a day. The feeling that you get when you finally achieve a goal that you had is like any other. Make a goal, do whatever it takes to achieve it no matter how hard it is.