Looking back, Looking forward

I thought it was time to sit and look back at the year 2013, and reflect on my running. In March of 2013, I started working with Coach Caleb Masland as my running coach. Caleb was very highly recommended, and the more I was hearing about him, the more I wanted his direction in my running. Back in March, I couldn’t run a mile nonstop much less more than 2 miles total. 



My goals for my running back then were to 1) Increase my mileage  2) Run a half marathon. Not too much, just plain and simple. The thought of a half marathon was just a dream at that point. When I started receiving my weekly workouts from him, I failed day after day with what he had planned for me to do. Many times I texted or called him, ready to quit because I just couldnt keep up or accomplish the tasks the way I wanted to. I kept reading all the posts on facebook from my other teamates, who were making great progress. I wasn’t. I certainly didn’t feel worthy of the term “bonkproof”.  

Caleb explained many times to me that it’s not so much how you get your workout’s accomplished.. it’s the fact that you got out there and did them. So what if I had to walk the majority of it for the first month or two. So what if my speed was terrible, who cares? Slow and steady, he would say.. get after it one mile at a time.  SO many times in my head I would wrestle with the fact that I am still somewhat obese and not a fast runner. Many times I feel like I’m still in a 300lb body… but then I’ll have a great run and I realize that I have definitely improved overall.

My first big race last year was the Sugarloaf 15K. Not a huge race by any means, but the longest race I had ever run. I prepped mentally and physically for this.. scared to death that I wasn’t going to be able to finish. A glimmer of hope though, in the back of my mind, kept me thinking positively though, and yes, I finished and accomplished what I wanted to. That was a huge boost to my self confidence!
I was fortunate enough to be selected for a free bib for the Beach to Beacon 10K, one of Maine’s finest races. That would be the biggest race I had taken part in. Thousands of runners, all lined up together, running a beautiful course that concluded at a lighthouse… you can’t beat that! Joan Benoit herself was there, and it was a great time. I finished and was very proud.
I spent the summer preparing for my first half marathon. At the same time I was having issues with my diet, and Irritable Bowel Syndrome had set in. This was hampering my long runs on the weekends. I seriously began to wonder if I was going to be able to complete a half marathon at all. Before I knew it though, October had come and I was at the start line, ready to go. It was a cold morning, but I was ready. Hubby was going to meet me halfway and fill up my Tailwind in my water bottle for me. That gave me something to look forward to.  The race went well. I loved the people, and the run itself. Had more potty stops than I wanted to, but I finished under 3 hours, which is all I set out to do. 


Now the calendar says 2014 and I find myself searching for the web trying to figure out which races I will do this year.  As of today, this is what I have come up with for races:
1) *Publix Atlanta Half M March 3
2) *Bridge the Gap 10 Mile April 6
3) *Healthy High 10K April 13
4) *Sugarloaf 15K May 18
5)   Blue Light 5K June 7
6) *Rail Trail Half M June 22
7)   Shipyard Old Port Half M July 13
8)   Beach to Beacon 10K Aug 2
9) *REV3Glow Run 5K Aug 21
10) Nubble Light Half M Aug 23
11) *Maine Marathon Oct 5

The first one on the list is coming up in March. The Publix Atlanta Half Marathon. We have members of Team Wicked Bonkproof coming from all over (we are a global team) to run either the half or the full. It will be a fantastic experience to meet people that I have been chatting with via facebook for a year or so now. I’ll probably be the last teammate to finish the Half, but that’s ok. I’m going to savor the experience of an out of state race. One of the teammates is running his first full marathon, and I’ll be done in time to cheer his finish. 

2013 Team Wicked Bonkproof members: 
Louise, Coach, Abby, Lindsay aka Mrs. Coach
Now, as you can see.. there are 4 half marathons in the list and my first FULL Marathon also. There is absolutely no way that I could have ever gotten to this point in my running without Coach Caleb’s help. His direction has kept me injury free, and when I seem to lose focus, he’s always there to be the voice of reason and “reel” me in.  I guess it’s different for me, as I am not a fast runner. I don’t run with groups of people because I can’t keep up. I run by myself, I walk when I need to, and I miss runs and workouts occasionally. I see my teammates working so hard to accomplish their goals.. and those always seem to be so different than mine. But.. I take my running just as seriously as they do, even if it’s not spectacular by any means. 
So this year will be my first full Marathon.


Am I nervous? YES Am I afraid to fail and DNF? YES  It’s always in the back of my mind when I talk about it with people. I know that I have a lot to accomplish before I will be ready for that race in October. I will need to buckle down on my weight loss and start eating healthier. I will need to stop skipping my core exercises and start doing them religeously.  Can I accomplish 26.2? Yes, I’m quite sure I can. I am bonkproof, after all. 

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