This past Sunday, November 15th, I did something I've always wanted to do, run/walk a half marathon. Fear of failure had kept me from trying before. When I started my job search back in February of this year, a friend (in Dubai), introduced me to one of her Houston friends who might have a job lead- Emily. She didn't have a job lead, but I got more than a job, I got a friend for life. My new found friend wanted someone to walk with on Saturdays as part of Houston Fit. I thought it would be fun to meet new people, and get on track to becoming a healthier me.
We made a commitment to each other to tackle the La Porte Half Marathon over the Fred Hartman Bridge, one of the most beautiful structures in Texas. The Fred Hartman Bridge is supported by two sets of diamond-shaped steel towers that reach 440 feet into the sky with distinctive cables that glow in the sun. It is the longest cable-stayed bridge in Texas. After seeing the pictures, who wouldn't want to walk this with a friend and 1,700 other people. For Emily and I this was a formidable challenge!
But that's what Emily and I did last Sunday after training for six months... many Saturdays getting out of bed at 3:30 am. It was the most exhilarating experience I've had in a while. I even made new friends along along the way. I've gone from super-couch-book-reading-potato (nothing against reading, just making the point that I was pretty sedentary), to adding a full Marathon to my bucket list!
13.1 Things worth sharing ...
13.1 My bucket list just got shorter. (Make a bucket list and start working it)
13. 26.2 is in my future (Keep setting big goals)
12. I can achieve any goal I set for myself. Just got to take that first step (It’s ok to crawl, walk then run)
11. Next time I’ll be prepared for the inner child, the 5yr-old-in-me, who says mid-way through the race, No you can’t! (Yes I always can. It’s all in the head and heart)
10. I should have done this sooner. (Don't ever think a goal is too big to attempt)
9. Trust my training and preparation (Consistency in preparation is the secret)
8. There will always be many athletes way better / faster/ stronger than I. (I only have to be the best me)
7. Driving the course ahead of time and mentally crossing that suspension bridge helped me to conquer its steep incline … going and coming. (Pays to visualize)
6. It’s all about the first 2 miles. (Like the Chinese saying, the longest journey begins with the first step)
5. I offered encouragement to complete strangers struggling during the race. (I am a natural motivator)
4. I was definitely receptive to others who came along and encouraged me. (It’s ok to get energy and motivation from others)
3. It was challenging running up-hill, but there was great momentum on the downside. (Persevere through the hard stuff; it really does get easier)
2. Nothing beats the sense of accomplishment one experiences after a goal is achieved. Particularly after hard work. (Pause and bask in a success)
1. I can train, blog and talk-the-talk, but in the end, I had to walk-the-walk! (I can proudly say I did it! My 12th-woman was my virtual supporters)