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Over a year ago, my husband Jason started running. Really running. Making it a goal every day, a hobby, a new passion. Last June, he ran his first half marathon. He was injured, and likely shouldn't have been running that day, but he did it. He crossed the finish line. I was so proud of him I cried. I was proud, excited, and jealous. Seriously, I was jealous that he set his mind to something like running 13.1 miles and did it, and I didn't.
I wasn't exactly jealous that I didn't do it, but more than I didn't have the determination to do it. I wanted to be part of that experience, of pushing myself to go further. I wanted to get my butt off the couch. I wanted to feel that 'runner's high' that people claim to get. I even wanted to get blisters and sore muscles, just to know I earned them.
So, this year, I vowed to be a part of it. I told myself that, if I had started running when Jason did, I would be further along than I am now. And that there's no excuse to not start.
Even though I didn't want to, and I didn't feel ready, and it was February in Minnesota, Jason signed us up for the Twin Cities Valentine's 5k on February 12th. He urged me to try, and signing up was the first step. I feel like, after registering, there's no turning back, and that's a good thing.
On the morning of February 12th, after not training the weeks before, and feeling pretty bad about myself (on top of stomach cramps and some intense knee pain, not to mention the anxiety of my first race) Jason and I set out to run our first 5k together. In February, in Minnesota.
Let me be completely honest with you, it wasn't awesome. Not even half awesome. It was, however, a learning experience. I learned I really need to work on my breathing so I don't get out of breath quickly. That my muscles (ha, muscles... like I have any) could take me much further if I could just breath. I learned that I need (need!) to do some training outside, especially when there is danger of ice and snow, since it made me nervous on the day of the race. I learned that no matter how much you sweat, if it's 30 degrees outside, your ears still get cold. I also learned that, no matter how I felt during that race, I finished, I could do it again, and perhaps most important, I WANTED to try again. I wanted to do better.
At the finish line, where they provide water and snacks and such to the runners, they also have information about the next races coming up. I looked at the sign for the St. Patrick's Day 5k and asked Jason "can we do that one?" And so, on March 12th (that's this Saturday) I will be running my second 5k with Jason. Wish us luck!