more accurate to say that for many long years I have had spells of wanting to be a runner. The determination to make it happen waxed and waned over time, and with each passing year as the (stupid) number on the scales climbed higher, the likelihood of it ever happening seemed less and less. About two years ago, I started talking with a friend on FB who is an avid runner, and we'd talk about... running. A recent visit to the doctor and an unpleasant experience with some medication was the (thousandth) wake up call I needed, and I knew it was time to get serious. My friend agreed to walk with me and 'coach' me, and when I ran out of excuses as to why I couldn't do it, we finally got together.
I fully expected to die. My job is very sedentary, and Black Friday shopping aside, I don't do much walking at all. So I was a little worried when I realized our intended route was from SES all the way to the end of Broad Street. This took us right in front of my childhood home, and up the killer hill just past my parents' house. That same hill that I was never EVER able to conquer on my bike as a kid. I was a little worried that CPR would be required before we reached the top of the incline. Thankfully, I did not embarrass myself, nor was it necessary to dial 911 to come airlift me off the peak of the
mountain hill. We didn't quite make it all the way to the stop sign at Dooleytown Road that first day, but we got far enough over the mountain hill to smell the cow poop in the pasture by the road. It was a defining moment for me when we reached the Finish Line. And I was hooked. We walked outside whenever weather and schedules permitted, and on an every-other-day-or-so basis, I diligently walked the miles on my treadmill. (Even though that required some re-organization skills - as said treadmill had become a clothes rack and the walkway thingy was covered with unfinished glass bottle projects.) We extended our outdoor walk a little further, so that round trip we were covering 2.6 miles each time. So I upped my game on the treadmill to 2.6 miles as well, so I wouldn't lose my momentum.
Then something just happened, and the hands on my clock were spinning so quickly there was not enough time in the day to get the miles in. It takes (me) a long stinkin' time to walk that far. You'd think I would have all kinds of time on my hands, but that's simply not the case. At any rate, before I knew it, nine days had passed without any walking. (Hmm.. well.. that's not exactly true, either, because there WAS a shopping extravaganza expedition trip - and lemme tell ya, I did plenty of walking then, often carrying heavy bags. So I can rationalize missing nine days by saying that I did "weight training" for a good 12 hours straight!!!)
Earlier today I realized that it is the last day of the month - and I so wanted to reach my goal for the month. So, despite a serious two-day/night sleep deficit, mental and physical exhaustion, and an extremely full schedule today, I carved out the time just so I could make my log entry for the last day of this month. And let me tell you what a challenge this was: I made two trips to Athens this morning (between which I had coffee with DJ - who gave me some coupons for... oh, wait - that's a whole different story, but it necessitated the second trip to Athens). Today was Ryan's birthday party (DJ's grandson), and I was having company over to watch the game. And there is no word to describe the despicable shape my house was in. Nevertheless, my stubborn self insisted on getting the numbers logged today, so I watched a little TV while I did the treadmill today.
And I'm so excited to say that I have completed my first marathon!! (almost) Now, my athletic/runner friends might notice that I have chosen to phrase my words very carefully. And they are wise to notice that. When I say I 'completed' it - I mean that I walked the miles today necessary to complete the cumulative miles to make a marathon. For those who know me, the fact that I have walked that many miles in one month is pretty wild. As wild as I find it to know that many people run/walk that many miles (all at one time) in just a few hours.
But before you high five me and pour cold Gatorade down my back, I must confess. I am still a few miles short of my marathon. When I came in here to log my miles, I was elated to see my grand total of 23.2 miles.
Until I realized that a marathon is not 23.2 miles. It is 26.2 miles. (Thus the "almost") Dang it. I hate anything to do with numbers, and I've been so fixated on being able to achieve a 5K (3.1 miles) in one session, that I guess that "three" stuck with me and I was thinking 23.2 miles. So, I'm a little bummed about that.
But on the other hand, I'm high-fiving my ownself, because I am shocked and amazed that it only took me three weeks and five days to walk 23.2 miles. Oh, and I might add ... whenever we are crossing an intersection, sometimes I do pick up the pace enough to be considered a lazy man's jog. ;-)
While I'm sad that I didn't do as well as I thought I would, it's just like the silly number on the scale. Of course, I hope the number on the scales will go down, and my miles-walked number will go up.
I've set my goal for the month of December to walk 30 miles. Not sure how often we'll get to walk outdoors, but there's really no excuse not to use the treadmill. I'm already a little nervous about adding 6.8 miles for the month - because I know it will be a crazy, busy time. But I'm hoping the resolve to continue will be strong, and I have the stamina (and time) to do it.
But all the same - if you see me laid out on Broad Street in sweats and sneakers with buzzards circling overhead, please notify the authorities...