Yes, I know, it’s truly shocking. So much so that I broke down into tears after I finished the race. I was overwhelmed and elated.
For as long as I remember I have always been impressed by runners. Folks that are willing to go through the pain and hardwork to achieve that final goal. There is the resolution on their face, their pumping arms, their outstretched legs.
During my first year as an AmeriCorps with Habitat for Humanity in our small bio’s I wrote, “I love runners” as my final statement about myself. Yet, I had never ever ran, I couldn’t get myself off the couch, I just observed in awe from afar.
In high school we had the infamous mile run, man I hated and dreaded that day. It was so awful that once at the end of the run I told my friend that I had never seen the grass turn neon green before, she kindly told me the grass was not neon green and steered me towards the nurse.
So what finally got me running? Signing up for a race. Except it wasn’t my idea. It was my friends, a friend that I owe the world to. Peer pressure can be a great thing. The race was a 5k, and since I still didn’t know how to get off the couch I didn’t train for it. The day of the race I told myself I would walk a part of it. But once that race started my feet didn’t know how to stop for a walk. I ran the whole thing, slowly, but I ran it. My pace was 10:55 per mile and mind you there was a large hill. At the end of it I wanted to do more.
The same friend then registered for a half-marathon, I again followed suit to stay cool. In the end I didn’t run a half-marathon, I changed it to a 10k. But I am still darn proud of myself. I actually trained and ran the streets of Seattle for this one. My pace during training wasn’t good, but I was running and feeling better about myself than I had in a long time. My longest run was 7 miles, I couldn’t believe it, this bum could run 7 miles straight. On race day my adrenaline was going and I ran the fastest I have ever run. There is something about a race that makes it different, being in that crowd with everyone trying to reach that finish line. My pace was 10:16 per mile. I ran twice as long as the 5k, cut 39 seconds per mile off my pace, and this time there were lots of hills.
Jon also joined me for the 10k. We both wore shirts in memory of Jon’s uncle Mike who passed away in a tragic airplane crash this past year. Mike was a runner and an inspiration to all of us to never stop running, no matter your age. On the back of our shirts there was this poem, I love every line of it and it rings so true to me:
Why do I run?
‘tain’t no mystery wanna have a good medical history.
Doctor told me runnin’ is great ~ helps them blood cells circulate.
Great for the lungs,
Great for the ticker, can’t nothin’ getcha in better shape quicker.
Feels so healthy, feels so sweet, pumpin’ my arms and flappin’ my feet.
Moldin’ my muscles, firmin’ my form, pantin’ like a pack mule, sweatin’ up a storm.
Keeps me youthful, keeps me loose, tightens my tummy, and shrinks my caboose.
Beats bein sluggish, beats bein’ lazy ~
“Why so I run?” Maybe I’m crazy!
It’s never late my friends to start running. It’s in you, it’s in all of us. For your heart and for Mike, get out there and run. Signing up for a race also helps.
As for the pictures, they are some sugar cookies to get you inspired for Easter. I used the same techniques as my snowflake cookies. Everything you need to know about how to make sugar cookies is here. Sugarbelle’s royal icing recipe is here, and the sugar cookie recipe is here. A couple of tips from moi: Use a silpat or parchment paper to bake the cookies, make sure that egg gets to room temperature, and that the butter is soft. For the royal icing, consistency is key—I am still working on this one.
I leave you with a photo of Jon and I at the end of the race. Much love.