I have this amazing friend.
She's the one who originally inspired and encouraged me last year to run my first half marathon.
This summer, she competed in her first Half Iron Man (which if you're unfamiliar is a 1.2 mile swim followed immediately by a 56 mile bike ride, followed immediately by running a half marathon). She did it in grueling heat with a smile on her face.
And yesterday, she registered to compete in her first full Iron Man (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride, 26.2 or marathon run) which she'll complete next September.
In preparation, she needs to run a marathon and so together, we're headed to Kansas City in November to do the North Face Endurance Challenge.
North Face offers these races in cities across the country. They're typically off road with crazy ass elevation and some technical difficulty.
Kansas City is one of the few races that will be on the road.
She'll be running a full marathon and I'll be running a half.
Reviewing the course, it's beyond clear that I'm going to have to start running hills and doing some tempo training work. I'd like to get a bit faster. And, I'll have to learn to run in colder temperatures. The high for KC in November is 52 degrees.
I'm excited. I'm anxious. I'm hopeful. And now, I'm re-focused on a new goal, a new challenge, a new opportunity and a new chance to keep owning 2012...the year of Kelly.
Wish me luck!