5 years ago I ran my first marathon at the age of 38. I had run a little off and on for years prior, but never for more than 4-5 months at a time before getting injured or being pregnant or running a business and taking another year or 2 away from running. I did not grow up running or participating in sports that required running and I am far from a natural athlete. However, I had always had the idea of doing a marathon in my head (even when I couldn’t have completed running a 5k!). All this to say, you never know what is possible until you try. And that small seed that had been planted in my head to “someday” do a marathon has now blossomed into 11 marathons completed and a bigger seed in my head to “someday” (as in 4 weeks) do an Ironman.
My first marathon was the Duke City Marathon in Albuquerque where I live. I didn’t know much about training back then and didn’t even have a watch with GPS. I found a marathon plan online for running 3 days a week that I used because I had battled many injuries that derailed my running over the years. The plan worked well and I was able to run the entire marathon without stopping (although the last 10k I could have probably walked faster than I was “running”).
As painful as those last miles of the marathon were, both physically and mentally, once I crossed the finish line I knew I wanted to do another. I thought with better training I could possibly get a little faster. Unfortunately, my eagerness to continue running did not allow my body proper rest and recovery time after the race, and I was quickly injured again. It took me 2 more years of working through various injuries before I was able to run my second marathon.
Now 5 years, 11 marathons, including 2 Boston Marathons, later, (not to mention a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis), I still want to train and continue to improve. I have taken a bit of a detour from running marathons due to triathlon training this year. I raced my first Half Ironman 4 months ago and am getting ready for my first Ironman on November 16th. I’m fairly certain that myself of 5 years ago never could have imagined this! Keep dreaming, let those thoughts that might seem crazy in your mind become the seeds that blossom into your future. You never know where they will take you.