A little over five months ago, right before the new year, I decided that I wanted change.
I was ready to focus on me, to invest in my health, and to stare fear in the face,
At the urging and encouragement of a friend, I reluctantly signed up to run a half marathon.
The cool part was that the race was on the morning of my 37th birthday.
The not so cool part was that I hadn't run a mile continuously in over a decade.
So, with the registration confirmation in hand, I started training. Over the course of days, weeks, and months, I lost 26 pounds and gained confidence and strength. I trained six days a week primarily at 5:00 am when everyone in my house was in bed and was done by 6:30 am. I had a lot of set backs. The winter months, brought two sinus infections and back-to-back urgent care visits with ten day antibiotic doses. And then six weeks prior to the run, I injured myself with a nasty case of shin splints that took an act of God to make better.
And then this morning came...the day I'd been waiting for. The alarm went off at 4:00 am. My friend was picking me up at 5:00 am for the 50 minute trek to the race. And by 4:45 am, it was hailing, thundering, lightening and sheets of rain were covering the streets.
My first thought was fuck me. I'm screwed.
By the time the gun went off 7:00 am, the weather completely cleared. There was no rain, barely any wind, and sunshine...but it was definitely humid and got hot as the morning wore on.
Equipped with an awesome play list, gu and sports beans for nutrition, and a head/heart full of mantras of strength...I set out to run 13.1 miles with 10,000 other runners. It was amazing. Two of my favorite signs read, "You've now run longer than Kim Kardashian's marriage lasted," and "Call me...clearly you have stamina."
The fans were incredible. The streets were lined with people giving high fives and loads of good will and encouragement. I crossed the finish line at the 50 yard line of the University of Nebraska at Lincoln's football stadium with my picture across the enormous Husker Vision screen while my family watched in the stands.
This journey has taught me so much. But if there's one thing that stands out head and shoulders above it all...it is beyond a shadow of a doubt...that our greatest advocate lies inside of us. There is no one on this earth who can do more for us than we can do for ourselves. We just have to believe and we have to practice. Life is about the doing, the being, the now.
If you haven't gone for one thing in your life that feels impossible...do it. The feeling will be indescribable and you will know forever that unbelievable strength lies in you.