Running Towards New Possibilies

I did something this weekend that previously went in my ” I could never do that” file.  I ran a half marathon and  in less than my goal time no less. I was beaming when I crossed the finish line, as my oldest daughter, who had just finished her first half as well , cheered me on! Just a year ago if you had told me that I would take up running at the age of 47, I would have laughed and then I would have laughed some more.

Here is what I learned from the experience. First that creating a plan and following it consistently is the key to success. It was hard when I first started to train. I couldn’t breathe, my body wanted to collapse with every step and my muscles–they ached. In my determination, I focused on just following the training schedule telling my mind to be quiet when it began to rumble instead of focusing on what wasn’t going well. I mapped out a schedule in my datebook and followed it without fail. It took commitment and some creativity to fit training into my day. Sometimes I would have to carve out time between stops during my evening “mom taxi runs”.  At other times I would reluctantly run in the wee hours of the morning. After struggling early in my training,  I looked up during a run one day and realized that I didn’t think I was going to die anymore, I felt stronger and my astonishing slow pace was getting a bit faster.

What surprised me most after I finished the half on Saturday was the new level of confidence I felt from achieving something that I had always felt was out of reach for me. The experience reminded me that with planning and dedication great things are possible. It dawned on me that failing to set goals on a regular basis robs me of future opportunities and personal growth. Looking at it another way, the rewards of being open to new possibilities and stepping forward to take a great big gulp far outweighs the risk of feeling awkward and uncomfortable when starting a new endeavor. The idea that each new challenge I take on, whether successful or not, can help me become the best version of myself is reason enough not to quit now.  Now I am left with two questions, “What’s next and how I am going get there?”

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