This past weekend I completed Half Marathon number 8 in my life as well as 50 States Half number 3 at the Shamrock Half in Portland. A quick backstory to this race: I am an ambassador for the Love Run Philadelphia Half and won their grand prize of an all expenses paid trip to this run. So needless to say it was a very exciting weekend for sure!
Truth be told I am a solo runner through and through. That is not to say I haven’t had my fair share of group runs, and can say I even once ran a 10 mile race with someone stride for stride. But those are the exceptions, not the rule. There is something about being alone, going at my own pace that I really enjoy. And if I’m being completely honest, a part of me does get concerned about being the slow one. Even though anytime I have participated in a group run I have surprised myself by my speed. Maybe there is something to being pushed by others around you?
Anyway, I digress…..
This year was my 3rd year running the Fireside Frostbite 5 Miler. It is a 5 mile race hosted by the Ambler Area Running Club (AARC) that is known for it’s chilly weather (hence the name). However this year runners lucked out. Race day morning was close to 35 degrees, unseasonably warm for the time of year. Compare this to years past where it was so cold I had icicles forming on my beard.
The morning started like most (non half marathon) race mornings do for me. Getting changed into my running clothes but not really sure what to eat to get ready for the race. So I shuffled through the cabinets and found what is my favorite food group: cereal! So I scarfed down a bowl of Cap’n Crunch and headed out the door.
As an avid runner I pride myself on how many miles I run per month. So when my Nike Running app read “0 Miles” at the end of December 2016, needless to say I decided I needed a kick in the ass. As a result I told myself that in January of 2017 I would run a 5K every day for the month. Having run 2 full marathons, a triathlon and many half marathons the 5K distance did not scare me. However to keep that up for 31 straight days? That would be a test of will power. But I was up for the challenge.
Although I still felt that wouldn’t be enough. So I took the plunge and decided I would go alcohol free during that time as well. I pride myself on not having a dependency on alcohol so I did not see this as a challenge. However I do have a passion for craft beer so I knew this would test me as well.
In July of this year (exactly 3 days before my 32nd birthday to be specific) I will be running what’s dubbed as the “Worlds Most Beautiful Marathon”. Or in my case, the half. It is the Mad Marathon in Waitsfield, VT and I will be running on behalf of BibRave.
After seeing a picture like this it is no wonder why have earned that nickname.
As with most of my running goals, I had a spark of an idea and after very little research decided to turn that idea into a goal.
Having said that, the running goal that will now consume my immediate future is to run a half marathon in each state of the country. 50 States, 50 Half Marathons.
It seems more than ever this year, I am seeing people on social media excited to put 2016 behind them. Maybe it is because it is the end of the year and that is normal, but I do not recall a time in my life where so many people were excited to move onto a new year. I myself have never been that type…..until now. I wrote recently how 2016 was my worst running year ever, so you can put me in the group that looks forward to saying goodbye to 2016.
Now that brings me onto 2017.