As I’m getting ready to pack my bags and head to the magical world of Disney for my fourth half marathon of the year, I have a lot on my mind… and all of it has to do with running. I’ve been a fairly active exerciser most of my life but running is still something that feels new to me. I remember very clearly how my first runs felt just 3.5 years ago. I distinctly remember how hard it was just three years ago to push myself to the four mile mark. It was almost exactly three years ago today that I set my first actual running challenge – to run a half marathon. It made me nauseous just thinking about it. But I did it. And here I am today ready to complete my fourth half of the year to accomplish my personal challenge of a half every season.
For me, running has never been just another way to workout. It’s been a journey, a proving ground and a challenge – every step of the way.
Today I am thankful for running because…
- It makes me – the girl who was almost always picked last for a team – feel like an athlete.
- It sets an example for my kids that I hope will last a lifetime.
- It makes me feel strong – physically and mentally.
- It has taught me how to push myself beyond myself.
- It has brought me wonderful friends.
- It has taken me places I never thought I’d go – running along beaches, through Disney parks, and across finish lines of 5Ks, 10Ks, 15Ks, half marathons, triathlons and even a marathon.
- It gives me an active hobby to pursue with my children.
- It makes me a better person.
- I have always been a goal setter and running feeds the need I have to set a challenge and meet it.
Running has never been easy for me and maybe that’s why I’m so thankful for all the gifts I’ve discovered over the miles.