What a Difference a Year Makes

A flashback from last year…

The Baltimore Running Festival ½ Marathon, October 2011

Baltimore Running Festival
2011

It was during the last few days before the race that I came across this quote:  “The only difference between try and triumph is a just a little umph!” by Marvin Phillips.  I don’t even know who Marvin Phillips is, but regardless the quote stuck with me. Participating my first ½ marathon, I had all kinds of crazy nervousness “running” through my mind…would I have enough umph to successfully finish this race?

Overall, I have to say that my training went well until I ran my 10 mile and 12 mile training run.  I just didn’t have it in me to run the long runs without being in severe pain. And, needless to say, the disappointment crushed my spirit.  Not to mention the little voice inside my head asking me what in the world was I thinking when I signed up for a ½ marathon. And the the self-doubt, would I even be able to finish the race?

Fast forward to race day…The Baltimore Running Festival, October 15, 2011. When we arrived in Baltimore, I told my hubby to lock me in the back of the Jeep and just get me when the race was over!  Well, as you can guess, that certainly did not happen. I think he truly understood my nervousness and said he would run the entire race with me.  After all, he’s a pro; he already ran a full marathon.

We found our starting point and anxiously waited to move to the starting line. It was a grand start!  There was so much scenery to take in that I didn’t even notice that I was running.  I was amazed by the amount of people clapping and cheering for us, complete strangers!  There were bands playing and even kids dressed up in Halloween costumes anxiously awaiting a “high five” as we sailed by them.

Being a school teacher, I allowed myself a reward every two miles.  What was the reward you ask? Well, every two miles I was allowed to have a piece of my SHOT BLOKS (black cherry flavor, yum!).  I love SHOT BLOKS and it’s funny how something so simple can be motivating.  But then, there was my ultimate reward. At mile marker 10 and mile marker 12, I called my daughter.  I told her it was just a matter of time before we triumphantly crossed the finish line. “You can do it, Mom,” she said.  The sound of her voice and her words of encouragement brought tears to my eyes!

My hubby and I ran the entire race together, and I ran the race without any of the excruciating pain that I had during my training.  We crossed the finish line hand-in-hand. He flew like an Oriole and I soared like a Raven with a completion time of 2 hours, 19 minutes, and 16 seconds. It was a triumphant race indeed!

~The Oriole & The Raven~

Zoom in on Today, September 2012

I didn’t think I would ever be sitting here a year later preparing to run yet another race, but I am.  I am strong both physically and mentally. In my mind, I already have have crossed the finish line for this year’s ½ marathon. My hubby will be running the full marathon and my hope is that we will meet up at some point in the race and once again triumphantly cross the finish line hand-in-hand.

As I look back to a year ago, I am pleasantly surprised how much my life has changed.  It only leaves me wondering what will unfold in the next twelve months.  What a difference a year makes!

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