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You Think You Can’t Run A Half Marathon But Here’s How You Can

Today begins open registration for the Houston Marathon and half marathon. For those of you who have seen the runners out on Marathon day and thought to yourself, I would love to be one of those runners, but I can’t. I want you to take the word can’t out of your vocabulary! Because you absolutely can!

My first half marathon came in 2012 and I signed up after finishing the Dynamo 5k. I was a runner in high school but had fallen off the running wagon and needless to say after the loss of my brother, had fallen off every wagon. However, I need something peaceful in my life. Something with structure in the chaos of my grief. So in June of 2011 I found an organization called Bo’s Place, called them and asked if I could join their run for a reason team. They gladly accepted me and my training began.

I had no idea that the first steps I took on my first training run would take me everywhere I have been.

How was I supposed to train? I had run cross-country in High School but this was completely different. So I googled it. True story. Then printed off the training suggestions I found and stuck with it. It was hard. It was trying but I can tell you right now, I am as hard-headed as they get and when I decide I am going to do something, that’s it. There’s no stopping me. I woke up that January morning in 2012 nervous and scared and I felt so unprepared but I was excited. So excited I got downtown at 4:30 am! The race wouldn’t start for hours later but I was pacing. I couldn’t contain myself.

I was going to be one of the runners in the heights, coming down Allen Parkway and hear the crowd cheer and maybe it wasn’t for me, but I could pretend.

What I found as I started running into The Heights was that there is a bond all runners share. We are all out there running for something. I was running for my brother, not for time, not for a medal, but for him. As I crossed the eight mile marker, knowing that is the furthest I had ever run, I was scared, but I eliminated can’t from my mind and just kept putting one foot in front of the other, I just kept moving and before I knew it I was turning down Allen Parkway and headed,  “home”.  I crossed that finish line with tears in my eyes and, for me, that was the start of a whole new life in Houston.

That was the first Fundraiser I did, raising 3000 for Bo’s Place. I have worked with Run For A Reason since then and proud to say they have collectively raised over 20 million dollars. I would go on to Run for Woman Of the Year for LLS and raise over $50,000 and shave my head. I have ridden 5 BP MS150’s since. Traveled to three states and done over 12 half marathons since that January morning in 2012. That first step was not just a step toward a finish line, it was as step toward being the woman I have always wanted to be. To doing what I always wanted to do and it was by eliminating can’t from my vocabulary.

I’m never going to be the fastest. I’m not going to win the race but I am going to compete with myself every time I run. I am going to strive to be the best me that I can be every single time and when I cross that line, I know anything is possible. Because at one point I thought it was impossible and if I can do this. I CAN do anything!

So for those of you reading this thinking you can’t. Eliminate that word. Sign up to run. Take your first step. I will see you in January.

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