Tears were in my eyes. I was gasping for breath. I hadn’t genuinely smiled in over 2 hours. I felt hot, dizzy, and worst of all, I felt like a failure. I had just finished my first half marathon. It was awful.
The very first thing out of my mouth as soon as I found my husband amongst the sea of joyous hugs and high-fives was,
“I NEVER want to do that again.
The moment those words came out of my mouth I felt a flush of relief. It was over. And we could all move on.
Let’s back this story up a little and I will share a few things about myself. My name is Alexis and I turned 30 this year. I am a happy Navy wife and currently on a mission to challenge myself in 2015 by running the San Diego Triple Crown, a 3 Half Marathon series event in San Diego, California. Ohhh but it doesn’t end there…..I know it doesn’t end there…
My exercise story is fairly simple. I haven’t always been athletic, but for the better part of 15 years I have been really great at, well, exercising! I am a former Zumba instructor who started looking for a new challenge after moving to San Diego, where apparently everyone exercises outside. Exercising, specifically running, is something I genuinely enjoy. So, this isn’t a story of “couch to 13.1 in 12 easy weeks.” This is a story of what you can do if you tell yourself to just go do it. Bypass fear and doubt, do the work, and collect your reward! (in my case, several shiny medals).
So, how did I go from “Never ever, EVER” to “You know what, that triple crown idea sounds fun”?
Within moments of finishing, I began analyzing every aspect of the race. The race day itself was a hot 85 degree August day with sunlight beating down on every mile. My heart rate was elevated to 175 for the entire second half. I spent one full minute standing still in the water shower located at the 8 mile water station. I drank at least 5 cups of water at each station, pouring 4 more over my head before proceeding. I was sweaty, soaking wet, and exhausted. The race was seriously miserable.
It was only while walking home that the burden of the race started to lift. I began to view the experience in a completely different way. I started feeling like that giddy and jubilant person you see in race ads. I had just completed something I never thought I could do. I pushed even when I felt like I couldn’t keep running. I kept a pace that was good. Not “perfect” but good enough to finish with a pretty darn respectable time of 2:15. That’s when a new calm feeling came over me. I wasn't upset with my performance.
I wanted to do it again.
Not because that race was “so much fun” but because it was a hard goal that I DID achieve. The feeling I had after the race was so intensely positive, I became instantly addicted. I started to think of all the ways I could do it better next time. I wondered what it would be like if the course were different?, if the elevations were different?, if the temperature was different?… if I were different?! Stronger, leaner, faster.....I signed up for my next race within a few days.
And that is how we get here, to this place. This is the blog of a girl on a mission. A mission to get stronger, faster, and more confident every day.
And this time, I will do it smiling.
Join me for weekly blog posts on running and nutrition (and some beauty/fashion tips, too) as I train for the San Diego Triple Crown in 2015!