I started this blog in 2012 after making a new commitment to enjoy my running journey, no matter how slow. Each year of my running since then has had a different theme or intention:
2012 - Enjoy the Journey
2013 - Rebuild (post-surgery)
2014 - How Far Can I Go?
2015 - How Fast Can I Go?
The basics: I'm in my early 30s, wife to J and mom to Princess A (now age 7), I work full time, and I started my running journey in earnest in 2009. In 2012, my average pace for a short training run was anywhere from 12-13 minute miles, with long runs being about a minute slower. Currently my shorter training runs are 10-11 minute miles, with spadework faster and long runs slower.
Like many adult-onset runners, I could never run as a child or teen. Despite being a good athlete in gymnastics and softball, the only year I passed the Presidential Fitness Test in the mile was 1st grade. With allergies and exercise-induced asthma, and sprinting like I was being chased by a rhinoceros (no understanding of pacing!), it's no wonder I was not successful at running. I chose to play tennis in high school because I knew I couldn't survive the amount of running they did for all the other team sports. In college I dabbled in occasional runs - I even read running magazines!- but didn't stick with it.
Fast forward through getting a job, getting married, buying a house, having a baby... In early 2009, I joined a health and fitness forum on an online Disney message board that I was already a member of (click to visit The DISboards). Inspired by runners I met there and Tara from The Biggest Loser TV show, plus a desire to run a Disney race, I started training. I began the Couch to 5k program, which was a fabulous way to start (click to visit Cool Running C25k). After I graduated that program, I kept at it until I could run a little over 4 miles without stopping. I switched to run/walk intervals for half marathon training. In March 2010, I completed the Disney Princess Half. I absolutely loved it!
I started 2012 with a new philosophy - enjoying the journey. I wanted to keep training and racing, but I knew I needed to be more positive about it and try to avoid the knee pain. I experimented with race walking. I experimented with extremely short but frequent run/walk intervals. I experimented with tweaks to my form. With less time running versus walking, I was able to increase the number of pain-free miles my knee could do. After several months of successful training runs, and the lure of a special 20th anniversary Disney race, I signed up for my first full marathon: the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon.
I hope to spread the message that at any speed and whatever the obstacles, achieving your fitness goals is possible.
Thanks for reading!