Friday, November 16, 2012

We Interrupt this Normally Scheduled "Fashion Friday" For...

the best running moment I've ever experienced!

Hope you'll forgive me for not having a "Fashion Friday" post this week...I just gotta share with you all the run I had Wednesday night. 

I can't even explain it but it was amazing.  I had no idea what was ahead of me in my run on Wednesday evening but I am so glad I didn't skip the run because I was seriously contemplating it. 

As you know, I've been training for a 5 mile (8k) Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving next week.  I've been doing pretty good with my training and squeezing it in when I have been able to find someone to watch Miss H for me.  Big thanks to my sister, Tony and my neighbor for helping me out with this!! 

Even though I've been mostly keeping up with my training, it's been like pulling teeth to get me out on a run, if I can come up with an excuse, and it sounds good enough, I'd probably take it.  This week has been kind of difficult to find time when I'm going to get my runs in and yesterday I was really feeling guilty for not doing anything since Sunday and so when I got home I had every intention of asking my sister to watch Miss H so I could go get a 3 mile run in.  I needed to do 4 but I wasn't feeling it and figured anything is better than nothing.  Well on the ride home from work I kind of started to talk myself out of it.  Tomorrow night Miss H is with her dad, I'll just run tomorrow right during those couple of hours she is gone, my head was telling me.  But my heart told me, Sarah you could get two runs in if you ran tonight AND tomorrow night and so my head went back to running.  After I picked up Miss H from the sitter she was bugging me yet again to go play with the neighbor's daughter and so I figured I would ask her if Miss H could play with her so I wouldn't have to bug my sister and Miss H could have fun while I was getting a run in. 

So we got home and Miss H did a few of her chores and she was out the door to her friend's house and I changed into my running clothes and stretched and headed out. 

little chilly

pre-run - that smile is deceiving because I wasn't that happy to go run!
I did about 1/2 mile loop in my neighborhood and then headed towards the main highway.  I wanted to run somewhere different and I need to find some good paths to run with it getting darker out.  My neighborhood isn't the most well-lite area in parts of it and so I'm having to find some different routes to stay safe on my runs.  Hence the reason for the neon orange shirt I ran in.

I started out with the mind set I would do 3 but after a mile I was like, let's do 4 miles.  I always do that it seems, don't plan on going that far and then during the run I change my plans and push myself harder.  Heading out of my neighborhood wasn't bad, only about 1/2 mile there was no sidewalk for me to run on but it was still fairly light out yet when I was heading out.  I was tight and my feet felt very heavy during the first 2 - 2 1/2 miles and was thankful for the few moments of a break I got at a few stop lights just to stretch out my legs more. 

It was super busy out with cars and so I really had to watch it when crossing streets or entries into a few shopping centers.  I am definitely glad that I am ok to run without music and that I actually have adapted to preferring it over running with music.  I definitely have my eyes and ears alert at all times while running in a busy area.  I don't really know what I think about when I run, most of the time nothing, sometime I watch my shadow and realize that my form kind of looks like I'm skiing sometimes, or I pay attention to my form and try to take longer strides. 

A lot of times though I don't really give myself credit for what I'm doing.  Running is hard, I don't think anyone can go out and run and say it's easy, you have to put in an effort either physically or mentally or both on each run.  Every run is so different from the next that you never really know what it's going to be like until you just get out there and run.  I am naturally harder on myself and don't give myself credit for much of what I do.  You just do it!  Sometimes people will go on about how well I handle being a single parent and how I get so much done in the time I have to get everything done on my own with not much help.  Last night I closed a jewelry show and my hostess whose gotten to know me pretty well over the years, she went on about how she couldn't believe how much I got done in my evenings with making dinners, running, doing homework with Miss H, and all the other stuff that needs done.  And to be completely honest when someone says this stuff to me, it always kind of hits me, because I don't know how I do it.  I just do it...what other options do I have, ya know?  It's not a big's my job, it's my life, if I don't do it no one will.  I've heard people call me "Super Mom" more than once and I don't consider myself that at all, it's just what you do, right?  I think all mom's/parents are super parents for what we have to get done...I'm not any different from them.  <---see I don't give myself credit even if it's due. 

Well last night as I was coming back into my neighborhood and kind of scared for my life running in a semi-dark section with no sidewalks and hoping and praying to God that cars would see my neon orange shirt, which one jerk didn't and I had to quickly jump into the grass, I decided I was going to do 4.5 miles.  I could do it and I wanted to do it.  I needed to do it for my training.  The Turkey Trot is a week away, I can't slack now! 

I passed my street and kept going to do that last 1/2 mile loop again that I did when I started out and when I turned back to head home...something inside of me said  "Sarah let yourself be proud of yourself...look at what you have done!  It's ok to be proud of yourself!" 

And that voice was exactly right.  Where I was in that moment was the street that I have practically worn a path on since I started running back in April.  This street has so much meaning to me.  It's the street I turned on when I saw I was going to hit my first 2 mile run.  It was the street that I would push myself to not stop on those 4 blocks because of all the people outside working in their yards this summer and I wanted them to see me running, not walking.  It was the street that I started out walking on and pushing past painful shin splits and the pain in my feet from my plantar fasciitis.  So much sweat and effort as been pushed out on this street and here I was in November of the same year and about to finish 4.5 miles. 

And in that moment...the tears fell down my face.  
I was/am so proud of myself for accomplishing something that is so hard. The fact that I haven't given up.  I've pushed past every ache and pain and sore muscle to get where I am today at being able to run over 4 miles.  I went from running with a partner to running by myself.  I've gone from the comfort of only running in my neighborhoods to running along highways.  All those moments of self-doubt that I would never be able to regularly run 3 miles and how hard I pushed to just get to 1 mile.  I worked through sore muscles, burning lungs, sweating so much my eyes would burn from the sweat....and here I am just finishing a 4.5 mile run. 

I started out only wanting to do 3 miles...and I went way beyond that and am so ready for that 5 miler next week. 

I can't believe what I have accomplished!  I never thought I could be a runner, never!  And last night on my run, part of me actually let myself believe that I am a runner and be proud of myself.  To actually be able to see and feel that hard work pays off and that you do eventually get somewhere is amazing! 

Tears of Joy and Pride!
Don't ya love what my runs do to my naturally curly hair...errr!

If I can set out to achieve a goal as hard as running is for me, then anyone can do it.  You just can't give up!  I'm sure there were a lot of doubters of me when I said I was going to start running.  Heck I was one of them!  I just hoped that I wouldn't give up and I haven't.  And today here I am and I am able to run over 4 miles and next week I will be a 5 mile runner! 

I have never cried after a run before and actually let myself be proud of how far I have come.  Last night I didn't let myself wonder how I have gotten here...I know how...through really hard work that I did all on my own! 

Last night I stood in my room and just cried.  Cried that I have reached my goal and that I know I'm capable of more and that it's only begun and I'm so proud of myself. 

Best part of it all, has been Miss H seeing me accomplish it! 

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