June 7, 2015 I ran my first official race as an adult. It was a 10km run, and I was using it for practise for what was going to be my big race of the year.
I can still remember the days, nights and minutes leading up to the race. I was a ball of nerves and had so many unknowns about how the day would turn out.
Hindsight, I had nothing to really worry about, my fears over the bag check, and how the race would play out were really all for nothing. Though these things always give me pre-race jitters, regardless of race distance or number.
The race was a Shoppers Drug Mart run for women’s mental health. I would say it was a well run event, lots of excitement to be had both pre and post race. I was pretty excited for it. As we lined up for the start, I went as close to the front as I could, maybe 2nd or 3rd row back, it was a walk and run event. The gun went off and I hit the ground running hard! I had had so much anxiety leading up to the race, I was finding it very difficult to catch my breath, but eventually I did, and I was okay.
The course was a double loop, through a trail! Nothing like what I had planned for, and no mention of it on the race website, but I had to take it all with a grain of salt. I remember practising taking my gels, and drinking at the water stations, something I still need to work on!
The one really great thing about a looped course is that you get to see your family and friends more than once, the one not so great thing is, is that you still know how far you have to go.
I managed to finish my first 10km race in under 1 hour, while I had high hopes of finishing faster than I did, I was in the end so proud of how far I had come as a runner. The running high is real people, you can train and run and play out in your head how a race will go, and sometimes it will go that way, and other times it won’t, but regardless knowing I ran and competed and did as best as my body could THAT DAY, leaves you with a great sense of accomplishment.
As I look back, I can remember the serious amount of pain I was in post race, I had laid it all out there on the course, and I questioned my sanity, on how I would every survive a 15km race, let alone a half marathon. But the body and mind are amazing things, and the pain begins to dull, and the joy of running takes over and you can do it all over again.
In 365 days I have run 8 races:
Two Half Marathons AND
One FULL MARATHON!!!!
I say this all because if you would have asked me a year ago where I would be as a runner, mom wife, I don’t think I would ever have guessed here. But man am I ever glad, and proud to have made it this far. IF you believe in yourself even just a little bit, and take that very scary first step, you will be able to do so many great things!
The first step is to stop making those excuses and just try!!! I will be here cheering you on!!