This weekend I accomplished something that I have dreamed about for a long time but never made it a reality… until now! For the first time ever, I completed a half marathon, 13.1 miles. Yesterday two friends and I completed the Music City Half Marathon in Nashville, TN.
Starting around January, we set out to accomplish the goal of completing the half. Although some months we trained more than others, we worked hard to train correctly so we would enjoy the race and do it with confidence. We gave up a lot of time to run, to stretch, and to research methods of training and running; but it all was worth it when we crossed the finish line.
For me, this was a massive personal accomplishment. I was never a kid that should have ran a distance this long or even have a desire to run this long. I have struggled with weight and physical fitness most of my life. When I was a kid, my idea of exercise was reeling a fishing rod and eating a healthy snack was one cookie as opposed to two. I played football and wrestled, but I was a lineman and wrestled the larger weight classes. My goal at times was to get as big as I could. I reached 200 pounds in the 8th grade and although I was active through football and wrestling, there would never have been a way for me to do something like this.
In my early college years, I made a lot of very unhealthy lifestyle choices. I was not active and I ate a lot (Krystals at 2am anyone?). I got to one point where I weighed about 240 pounds and I was very unhealthy.
Even with that background, this weekend I accomplished something that would have been impossible at other stages of my life. I ran 13.1 miles without stopping, in the pouring rain, up and down hills… and I had the time of my life! (And not to mention I did it weighing a lot less than I did in the 8th grade!)
So we did it – we finished the race and we had a lot of fun. I cannot tell you how happy I am for being able to accomplish this and I hope that this is the first of many half marathons throughout my lifetime (I am not ready to commit to a full marathon… yet)
Not only was it fun, I actually learned a lot; a lot about running and training, but also a lot about life and leadership. Through the next few blog posts, I am going to unpack a few things that I learned throughout this process but in this post, I will just share a quick takeaway: you really can do almost anything you want… if you want to badly enough.
Like I said, I should not have been able to complete this task, but I have wanted to do this for nearly five years. Finally, last fall, I decided that now really is the time and we set out on a fun adventure to make it happen.
Once we made the decision, we were in. Although some days we wanted to bail, we didn’t because we wanted to complete it badly enough. As I wrote about before, we have to decide what we really want to do – then we can make it happen. For me, it was nailing it down and moving forward. If you decide to do it and work hard enough, you really can complete the task before you.
Like I mentioned, this is the first of a few posts on my lessons learned through the half-marathon experience. You will want to check back over the next week or so to continue learning with me on these things:
- The Power of Accountability
- Utilizing the Resources Around You
- Control what you can, Manage the rest
Thanks to everyone who supported me in training for this. I hope you have some things you are working towards as well.
What is a goal you have achieved or working to achieve?