This has been something that has been swirling around in my brain and I just need to get it out on paper...or uh....blog. Whatever.
One month from yesterday, on October 15th I'll be coming up on the second anniversary of the day I started running. In 8 weeks I will be running my 3rd half marathon...who knew?
The other day on my long run I got to thinking about how my life has changed since I started running. Let's start with the obvious - I left my teaching job in Chicago, moved to Florida, started a new job.
Lets get the perhaps not so obvious stuff out of the way. It took a while but I got a job...but it was WAY different then I thought I would be, I got overly stressed, really sick and made the decision to quit. After that I went through a REALLY bad time. I was anxious, nervous, scared, possibly a little depressed. Looking back now I think I was looking at the BIG picture and trying to take on everything too fast....
Thank goodness for my running. I think its safe to say it literally saved me. A couple of weeks after this all went down, I participated in my first long distance run - the Tower of Terror 10 miler. While it was not a perfect run I DID finish and I think seeing my running family and friends did me a lot of good. Felt good to smile and laugh again. And after that...I didn't have time to slow down - my first half marathon in January was coming quick! So here I am a year later, 3 half marathons and a new job (woohoo!) later and I've been thinking about how my running has affected my regular everyday life.
First of all - like I said the first job was a disaster because I kept looking at THE MOUNTAIN not the little steps. I think that's something has running has taught me. Sure, you go out there somedays planning to run 10 miles but there are a lot of days my brain and my body does NOT want to do that so I have to break it down. Sometimes its "lets just run 1 mile." Or "lets just run to the corner. " I've even have days where it's "Lets just run to that light post." In my real life when I'm having a tough week I don't look ALL the way to graduation. Don't even look to the end of the month. Some days its don't even look to Friday - lets just get through today....or at least the morning LOL.
Finishing these races has also made me strong in believing in myself. Once upon a time WAAAY back in high school, my gym class started running in preparation for the dreaded mile run. Well about two laps in, I had to quit because my side hurt SO bad. Years later, look at me - I'm a half marathon runner! In January I was SO proud that I finished! In February, my running partner was unable to make it to the race so I sent the rest of my team off and made it my goal to finish the race on my own. I was hurt but I did it! If that doesn't make you strong I don't know what does. And I'm happy to say in November I finished my 3rd half marathon uninjured, with an 18 minute PR! WOOHOO!
I guess the Kelly Clarkson song that comes up on my running playlist ALL the time is right "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger!"