What time are you aiming for?
This is a "If I had a nickel for every time...." question. It's the most popular question any runner gets asked. I know I ask fellow runners all the time out of sheer curiosity. However, when it's my turn to answer, I usually clam up and never voice my goal out loud - partly because I'm terrified that I won't reach it and also my ideal goal is usually to just beat my last time. I want a PR! Who doesn't?! Like me, do you ever get nervous announcing your goal out to the universe?
After running the Savannah Rock n' Roll half marathon these past 3 years, I would stay and watch the marathoners run their hearts out through the finish line. Some of these runners speeding through the finish looked like death. Watching their stomach wrenching disappointments as they studied their watches knowing that they hadn't qualified for Boston was heartbreaking. It made me not ever want to run a marathon. They looked so pained. How could this be fun?
So what do I do? I signed up for a marathon. I got involved through Team In Training and signed up to fundraise for the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco. My only goal was to finish. I mean, this was going to be a PR for me anyways. I was already terrified. Why stress myself out even more? During training, my mom fell ill and was hospitalized several times throughout the year. I had so much going on in my life at the time that I couldn't devote much time to my training and I needed to be realistic. So I set the only goals I could - to surpass my fundraising goal and to just cross the finish line whether it was running, walking, or crawling. I surpassed both goals and it was a wonderful experience! I didn't put too much pressure on myself, enjoyed the beautiful views San Francisco had to offer, and even recorded my sprint to the finish with my iPhone. I figured if I could sprint to the finish with that much energy, I had it in me all along to run my first 26.2.
So shortly after, I signed up for my second, the Austin Marathon, which I ran this past February. Again, I didn't have time to devote to training and my mom was still in and out of the hospital so I didn't set up a goal time for this race either. Instead, my goal was to run the 26.2 in its entirety - no walking, no intervals. If I didn't walk, I knew I would PR again, which I did in 4:47:35. It felt amazing! I cried as I crossed the finish line. I just did something that I didn't think was possible. I ran the entire thing and it was brutally hilly! After running the Austin, I wanted to really train for my next marathon. Just how much can I push myself? Just how well can I do?
If you look up the idiom "on-the-run", it means to constantly travel or moving from place to place. Welcome to my life! I get asked the question - "Do you ever sleep?" at least once a week. The truth is - I am always on the run. My weeks are filled with work, training runs, dropping kids off to school and extra curricular activities, traveling out-of-town for races and soccer games, theatre rehearsals, civic duties - you name it. In addition to being an avid runner, I'm a happily married wife, mother of two, an actress, singer, a Fleet Feet CREW coach, and work full time as the Marketing Manager for Thomas & Hutton Engineering Co. I love being on the run!