The gift of running

Where the Hell did January go? I swear I was just toasting to the new year and eating some tacos. Now I’m avoiding heart shape things and watching some Scandal. Where did a month go?

In keeping with one of my resolutions from list for 2013- write one blog a month- I figured this still qualifies. So here we go.

January 2013 changed me. It changed my imrpov. It changed how I look. Witness 12 inches of hair:

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But what it really did was test limits. Limits I thought I never had by doing a marathon. You heard right- a marathon. For those who haven’t Googled this already, a marathon is 26.2 miles. While you might drive for work, imagine running it – it is worse than that. Almost anyone can train for the running portion of a marathon, but doing it is a whole different level.

The body is not made for this stuff. Your mind is not made for this. Your feet (especially if you like rocking heels) are not made for it. So why do it? Honestly because you are crazy. I signed up for the marathon because I would 26 and two months when I ran it, and they had a sweet discount.I thought well I’ve done three half marathons, this is like two at once. And yes I was delusional.

It didn’t hit me until the night before the race as I slept in downtown Phoenix that I am only getting home on my feet. The same mileage I drive everyday home from work, I was now running. To say I was freaked out would be an understatement. I cried then. I cried when we started. I cried the first mile. What did I sign up for?

After throwing up about mile 3, I started calming down. At the 13.1 mile mark it hit me… I have to run another one of these….!&!@&! My head was saying fool stop running. Get in one of those trucks now( and yes my inner voice is Mr.T). I kept going though. I probably should have listen to Mr.T and stop. I wanted to cut off my feet, seeing things that weren’t there, and wondering if my hands were going to be this swollen forever ( the answer is no).

After I thought I had a heart attack at mile 18, I hit a wall. As I approached 19 miles, I started crying tears of joy. I said to Estela (who joined me on this crazy journey) I am proud of myself which came out of no where. In the past, I have been proud by accomplishments, but I don’t recall ever saying I am proud of myself-out loud. It was cleansing. I started to get energy I had somehow had, and powered on. It was slow, but I moved again.

At Mile 25 we got to the Mill Ave bridge. One of my favorite places in Tempe and also one of my favorite running spots. I decided to take my time- enjoy it. I walked down the bride like I owned it, and for a moment I did.

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As I made the turn down Rio Salado, we saw these girls forming a tunnel. Like any inner Diva does, I strutted down the tunnel like I own it.

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At 26, we ran the last .2. The first .1 felt like it went on forever. I suddenly sprinted the last .1 and crossed that finished line. I cried again, but this time I knew why. I went on a journey where every emotion I have ever felt in my time on earth was felt. I was happy, sad, beaten, stressed, panicked,laughing, at peace, and some many other things one can go through, but instead of holding it in, I let go. I was no longer the awkward 11 year old, rebellious teenager, party college kid, or the hurtful 24 year old. In 26.2 miles, I came out alive, shinny, and new.

It cleansed me in a way only running can.

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