Tomorrow I leave for my last big race of the season and my first international destination run. I registered for this half marathon BEFORE I had run my first one, a leap of faith on my part but it seemed like so much fun. The Disney Wine and Dine is a half marathon through 3 Disney parks ending at a food and wine expo at Epcot, what’s not to like right? It seemed like a fitting end to my first big training year, like going to Disney World after winning the Superbowl. In truth, I feel like I am waiting to exhale...my last bit of business and then I can relax.
Little did I know when I started this training season what I had gotten myself into, I would run a few races, do a triathlon and have some fun, easy, simple and to the point. I had signed up for a few races before the year started, a 10K and a sprint triathlon and later added a 5K and a half marathon. Little did I know that I would also add another triathlon, two 5K’s, an 8K and another half marathon. My easy simple plan became a monster that continued to grow, getting out of control and pulling me along whether I was ready or not. I had my highs points, running my first half marathon, and my low points, getting my first DNF on my sprint tri but all in all it’s been a great year. I pushed my body to its limits and it fought back with a few injuries.
Looking back, I sure did not know I had it in me; I am surprised at what I achieved and what’s to come. Running Disney is my victory lap, or laps as it is 21.2K long, I am trying to forget that fact. I trained hard and respect the distance but I want to have fun, soak in the atmosphere and enjoy myself. I will be running thinking about all the fabulous people who helped me get through this year, my husband and sons of course (love you guys) but also the other runners from the Orleans Running Room, Kiza , Stephanie and Barbara especially. The Facebook friends and bloggers who provided advice and insight and a kick in the pants when needed, you people are the best! We might race alone but we train together and I could not do it without you! Next year will be interesting but that can wait, now is my bit of fun and then I have 2 months “off”. Before you think I will be doing nothing, not the case, 3 runs a week, I am a group leader for the 10K clinic and an indoor cycle class for cardio and 2 strength training sessions to help my core. Hardly a holiday but less intense then training season and more fun and relaxed.
I learned a lot about myself this year, I am stronger than I thought and I can achieve more and work harder than I ever thought. I learned that failure does not have to define you and its part of the journey to success. I learned I LOVE being a cheerleader for others, I love helping other achieve their goals and inspiring them to dream big. I learned to love running, something I never thought would happen and I learned to love my body but I can learn to love a little bit less of it too. Anyway before the soft music swells up and I need the Kleenex I had better go and pack…the race report will follow next week….BYE!