Yesterday, I ran 6.2 miles.
If you would have invented a time machine, traveled back to October 2009 (when I began my training) and told me that I would be typing that sentence in seven months, I would have laughed at you. Hard. (After I got over being freaked out that you were from the future.)
But I did it! My wife and I ran the BolderBoulder 10K race yesterday morning and had a blast doing it. Seven months ago, the prospect of running for 10 minutes without stopping seemed like an utterly distant goal. When we made a New Year’s resolution to run a 5K together, I honestly didn’t know if I could do that – half an hour of running? Well, yesterday I ran for an hour and thirteen minutes straight.
That pace meant that out of 54,700 runners I ended in 27,938th place. Heh. So I’m definitely not a speed demon, but I’m not a grandpa out there, either. I’m an average, middle-of-the-pack runner, and I’m okay with that. I’m just excited we finished the thing. We did it!
Since there is always room for improvement, though, Shelly and I have set new goals for next year’s BolderBoulder (under 1:06:00) and the year after that (under 1:00:00).
I had no intentions of ever doing the BolderBoulder just a couple months ago. Now we’re already planning our training to do it the next two years.
By doing a training program for running the past seven months, I’ve seen how running requires and develops three areas of character: dedication, commitment, and perseverance. When I started this crazy ride, I was not a runner. I don’t think I can stress that point enough. But if I can do it, almost anyone can. All it takes is those three ingredients. When you don’t feel like doing it, do it anyway. When you feel like quitting, push yourself to keep going. You will be surprised and empowered by discovering what you can really do, and before you know it you will be accomplishing things you never thought possible. And that feels so good, it makes it all worth it.
P.S. Anyone out there who is running or wants to start running, you’ve got a year to prepare for the BolderBoulder next year and I’d love to see you down there. You’ve got to go, just for the experience. There are dozens of live bands performing along the race route, Boulder residents in their front yards cheering and celebrating, runners dressed up in crazy costumes, and people handing out all sorts of weird stuff along the route (bacon, Doritos, marshmallows, Cheetos, and beer just to name a few!).