Yes, you read it correctly, I am planning to cross running a half marathon off my bucket list this year. Let’s be honest, it will probably be a lot of walking but you get the idea.
This isn’t a New Years resolution, it’s something I signed myself up for back at the beginning of November. I’m just saying it out loud here and making it really “real”.
Running a half marathon is something that has been on my bucket list for years and years, but I’ve always had one excuse or another as to why I couldn’t do it. But then last fall when it seemed like it was prime marathon season, I saw quite a few people that I know through social media taking the leap and running their first marathon and it really got me thinking about it.
I had a really good friend that passed away many years ago and the last time I ever saw him, I passed him as he was running on the side of the road training for the Toronto marathon. At that time I remember thinking how admirable and amazing it was that after beating non-Hodgkins lymphoma early in high school, and here he was training to run another (not his first) marathon. I think that was probably one of the moments that led me to this point. After being so sick at one point in his life, he was given mere days to live, and here now he was running marathons.
Truth be told, a full marathon has never interested me, I’ve always only ever thought about a half. And my hat goes off to those that run marathons time and time again. And a half marathon at 13.1 miles (21.1 km) is no small feat in my eyes but yet a distance that I have always felt as attainable to reach with enough training and commitment.
And I know, because I’ve already gotten the reaction, that some people will take a look at me and my current size and think that I am crazy and will never be able to do it.
Am I at an ideal weight to do this? No. Would it be a lot easier if I lost a bunch of weight? Yes. Do I give a sh$t about what others think? No. Do I want to prove them wrong? Absolutely!
I watched other runners that didn’t fit the stereotypical runner type this past year conquer half marathons and marathons better than those with you’d think could easily run a long distance race and it this pushed me even more to sign up and finally cross it off the list.
I think the tipping point for me was watching Katie Crenshaw run the New York City Marathon, who had started her training later than most people, has always been a supporter of body positivity, cross that finish line and proving all her doubters wrong. The very next day I signed up for the half marathon.
I know I have a lot of things working against me. I’m going to be 48 years old at the time of the race, I’m no where near the weight I would like to be and carrying all the extra weight makes it much harder on my body but I am done listening to what others think about me and doing this for myself and proving to myself that I am worthy of this adventure.
Another thing that had stopped me in the past and been the excuse I could use to justify not running was the race would fall on a weekend that I had my son. I’d always thought it would be easier to run when I didn’t have to figure out how to have him there at the finish line. I had a conversation with him about registering at some point for a half marathon and he abruptly told me that if I ran one and he couldn’t be at the finish line cheering me on, he’d be mad. Cue the tears. So luckily with the help of friends and family, when I cross that finish line with the tears streaming down my face, I will be greeted by my favorite supporter.
So there you have it. It’s not going to be easy, it’s going to take a lot of hard work and commitment, but I hope you’ll follow along with me as I finally get to cross this item off my bucket list.