Monday, December 9, 2013

My first marathon

The Honolulu Marathon.  My first marathon has been ran & wow, what an experience!  This was a big deal for me.  Almost one year I trained for this race.  I have to say that it was
Right after crossing the finish line
worth every minute.  

I had four goals for this event. They were to:

  • Finish
  • Go slow & steady
  • Have fun
  • Leave everything on the course 
That's exactly what I did & it felt great!  

I won't lie, it was really hard.  From what I saw everyone suffers during the marathon.  I suffered.  After a certain point my body ached all over and I felt like it would never, ever ever end.  But I knew there was an end to it and there was!  My body, though it ached, carried me across the finish line.  Not just that but it even responded when I asked it to push past the pain to sprint through the finish.  Totally amazing what we can do when we want it enough!

The entire experience changes you, and as time goes on I'm sure I'll learn more about this.  For now, these are my thoughts...

  • Reaching such a goal transfers to the rest of your life.  You learn patience.  You learn to endurance & not just physical.  Dedication.  Pushing past pain, both physical & mental.  Delayed gratification.  The list goes on...
  • You're not alone.  When you do something like a marathon, everyone - everyone around you is working toward the same goal.  Everyone is suffering.  There's a raw, human realness there.  You're all experiencing the same thing & that makes you see people in a little different way.  It's nice.
  • There's a plan for you that you might not understand.  Stay true & it'll be worth it.  I wanted my first marathon to be the Space Coast in FL (a doable drive from where we lived).  Didn't happen.  Then I choose San Diego, close to where we moved.  Didn't happen.  I was so sad.  But God had planned for my first marathon to be in paradise.  What a gift! 
  • This brings out the greatness in people.  Wheelchairs, disabilities, people with crooked spines, the elderly.  There were all kinds of people with less than perfect health running a freaking marathon...but it's not just the runners.  I ran past hundreds of caring, encouraging, self sacrificing people that spent half a weekend day just to encourage me to keep running!  WOW!  I didn't know people could be so kind.  
I've been thinking about this a lot lately.  You may never run a marathon, and that's perfectly fine.  You don't have to.  Everyone has their own, so to speak, marathon in life.  Maybe for you it's a 5k, breaking the 'diet-fail' cycle or becoming a healthy role model for your kids.  

Whatever it is, put your heart & soul into it & get it done.  Keep going past the pain of change. And don't let anyone - ever, ever tell you that you can't do it or make you feel bad.  It's worth the effort in the end!  Let me know if I can help. -- Written by Emily Collins, OnTrack Fitness owner & trainer Honolulu HI