Two Years Ago Today.
May 4th, 2014, I ran my first half-marathon. I had never run a race before. Not a 10K, not a 5K. I had never run with fuel or water. I had just gone out and run until I was tired and then walked the rest of the way home. The furthest I’d ever run before the race was a 10 mile training run, that took me two hours and hurt like hell. I was just hoping to finish without having to walk.
BB and I ran it side by side with several friends. It was a fun race and we made it without walking. In two hours and thirty-eight minutes. Which works out to a 12 minute per mile pace. Slow, painful, and difficult. We were in Pittsburgh, so that meant hills and bridges. It’s a tough course with a terrible hill in miles 11 and 12. But we did it.
The first thing I said on getting home was, “Well, I don’t need to do that again.” How wrong I was. We ran another only four and a half months later. Then another two months after that. Then six more and a full marathon in the next two years. I’ve done training runs as long as 21 miles. I’ve run 150 mile months, and 40 miles weeks.
I’ve added strength training and biking and now swimming to my regimen. And I’ve done it all next to the most amazing and supportive partner anyone could ask for. Our relationship is deepened and fulfilled by our work to improve our fitness. We challenge each other and carry each other through it.
My body hasn’t changed as much as I’d like. I’m not as lean as I wish. I’m not as muscular. But I’m fitter than before and stronger than before and I’m not diabetic which is the real point of it all: health.
I like setting goals and following them where they can take me. I have new fitness goals now: a trail half-marathon; an Olympic triathlon; another full marathon. Then, maybe, an ultramarathon. Maybe, a half-Ironman. Who knows what one day. It’s been a challenging two years. But I can do chin-ups now. Sometimes I can do four in a row without touching the floor.
We’ve been crushing it for two straight years. I’m proud of myself. I like how I feel and I love where my fitness and health are. I don’t know when age will kick in and tell me I’ve reached my peak. But it’s not yet. What an amazing privilege to be able to do this. And to do it with such a wonderful companion.