Is there something that you have always wanted to do, but seem to come up with a million excuses not to? Today is the day to change your way of thinking. Take 5 minutes out of your day and figure out how to get it done. You may be asking, “Where is this coming from?”. Well, this past weekend, I crossed off one of those “In my dreams” items, I completed a half marathon. And not only did I complete it, I ran the entire thing without stopping in 2 hours and 9 minutes.
About four years ago, I causally mentioned to someone that it was my goal to complete a half marathon. Their response was less than encouraging. They shot a doubting look my way and said “A half marathon? Are you kidding me? Do you know how far that is?” (No, Mom, this wasn’t you).
Although this was not the response I expected, I understand where they were coming from. Growing up, I was by no means athletic. I have tried just about every sport and was somewhere between horrible and laughable in each and every one. In high school, I accepted the fact that I would never be going to the Olympics and joined the girly girls on the Pom Pon squad. I finally was able to put 15 years of dance class to good use.
I started running during college, when I was too cheap to buy a gym membership. At first, I would run a mile or two. As the years passed, I worked my way to three miles, which I have been comfortably running for about three years. Then this year, Danny and I decided to run the Disney Tower of Terror Ten Miler, so the long distance training began. After completing that race, I was determined to run the additional 3.1 miles and signed up for the Disney Princess Half Marathon.
Now, Back to that naysayer… At the moment that those discouraging words left her mouth, two things happened. First, I was overcome with doubt. Maybe she was right, 13.1 miles is a heck of a long way to run. Maybe I wasn’t strong enough and I would be left as roadkill on the course. But then, my determination kicked those thoughts to the side. I decided then and there that I would do whatever it takes to run that marathon. I was going to prove to myself and to any doubters that I COULD.
I promise I’ll break the race down more in another post, but let’s just say it was amazing. I teared up at three times during the race. During the first mile, I realized that my dream was coming true, I was running a half marathon (and qualified for the fastest corral!). At the fifth mile, the tears were there again when I saw a sign that said “It’s hard to beat someone who never gives up”. It was like someone put that sign there for me! Then, about five minutes after I crossed the finish line and was able to breathe without seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, I realized how proud I was of myself.
If there is one thing you take from this post, let it be this: There will always be someone or something that tries to get in the way of your dreams. It was Walt Disney who said it best when he said “If you can dream it, you can do it”.
Go Get It.