I began official training for the Capital City River Run Half-Marathon the first week of July. Last weekend I completed the race and it was my BEST yet! I am super happy to report that I beat myself again with a PR of 1:54:54 (8:47 pace)! That is 15 minutes faster than my time from this race last year and 5 minutes faster than my last half-marathon in May. Quite an improvement in a short period of time!
The weather was absolutely perfect and I had the support of my husband, mom, nephew from Colorado, and great friend who cheered me through to the finish line! There was also the encouragement from other spectators and the Team Playmakers coaches. It really lifts the spirits and keeps me focused on my goal – pushing myself hard and leaving nothing behind – when someone says, “Keep it up. You’re looking great. You can do it.” I thank all of them – both those I know and those I don’t – who came out and showed their enthusiam last weekend. You’re all incredible!
It’s amazing to me how running has become such a way of life for me. When I began my “Get Fit, Get Healthy” journey back in January of 2010, I had visions of being able to run and hopefully do some races here and there, but I never guessed that I’d be where I am today. When people ask me how I’ve done it, I tell them, “Perseverance and God.” And it’s so true. I had tried many times to get moving and shed the extra weight I had put on through college and the beginning years of marriage, but it wasn’t until I really surrendered my dream of being my healthiest self to God that things really clicked and I started to see results from just making simple changes to my diet and lifestyle. And it’s funny how easy it is to do and to keep it up. I don’t subscribe to fad diets; I eat what I want, when I want, because I know I am a person in motion who is always burning away whatever I enjoy. And I make my exercise routine a normal part of week – I keep a binder with all my fitness activities (cross-training, running, and race events) and I make sure I add my workout schedule for the week to my planner. Accountability to self is KEY. I also make it a point to journal about my runs, whether it’s the things I noticed, the healing of my mind and heart while on the road, or the things I hear God speaking to me. I love that after a long day, especially those where I come home with a headache and tired brain, all I have to do is go for a run and I’m completely restored and sorted out. There’s nothing like it!
Everyone has something that brings them joy – something that makes them feel free, serves as an escape and provides rejuvenation and happiness. For me, it’s running. God blessed me with this ability to endure long distances over a long stretch of time on my feet. I am incredibly grateful for this gift of running for many reasons: physical fitness, psychological clarity, and the spiritual connotations as it relates to life here on Earth and our future reward in Heaven. Running has completely transformed me. I stand in awe of God’s anointing of this in my life and ask that He continue to make me stong and fast and healthy for His glory.
I don’t know what half-marathon I’ll run next, but I do know I am on fire for more in the near future. In the meantime, I’m going to keep up the good work and revel in last weekend’s victory! 13.1 Baby!