I wasn’t always a runner. It actually intimidated me for a long time. Especially running on a treadmill. I still remember the first time I did, back at the old gym our family went to. Slowly but surely I worked up to a 5k distance so that I could run a 5k on Thanksgiving Day with my family. This has become a yearly tradition.
After that I consistently ran 5ks, mostly with my Dad and brother. One summer I ran two or three 5ks in a row with a friend. That was a crazy month!
In the summer of 2014, my friend C told me she was training for a half marathon and that she was really enjoying the training. At her encouragement I really started to think about running a half marathon, maybe the next year. Two days later, a different friend texted me and told me to register for the Rock n Roll Half in DC in March. I took it as a sign and I registered that day!
Training during the winter for a spring race was hard. On top of the cold weather and snow, it was the first time I was running distances over three miles. I hated treadmill running, but it became a nessecity with the weather. I don’t think I stuck to my training schedule all the way, but I did my best to make sure I was getting in a long run every weekend.
In March 2015, I ran my first half marathon. I remember I was really nervous about it, but I kept telling myself that I could do it. The morning of it was raining. I had some rain gear with me, I had extra socks. I had a playlist. I had Runkeeper ready to track my run!
I don’t remember all of the details, but I remember that I started slow and stayed very consistent. My Runkeeper wasn’t working so I wasn’t getting updates at my mileage intervals, but luckily the race had constant time checks so I was able to keep track of how fast I was going, generally.
My parents and my friend C were at the race to cheer me on and it definitely helped. If I have learned anything from all my races, it is that having supporters there can really make a difference.
I finished the race and was so happy! And I was hooked. A month later I ran my second half marathon and a few months after that, started training for the Richmond Marathon.