You know what is great about signing up for races? The motivation. Sure, there are all sorts of other amazing things that come after the fact...the sense of pride and accomplishment at finishing and even more so if you beat a goal you set for yourself. The emotions at the end of the race. The awesome crowd support. The free stuff.
But one of the best things about it for me, is the motivation. Once I sign up for something, that is IT. I am in. I cannot back out. I would be failing myself, everyone close to me who I have told, and my wallet (can you say WASTE of a registration fee?!) Because of all these factors, I am pretty much forced to train, whether I want to or not. Whether I am having a bad day or not. It's just not much of an option any more. It becomes more of an appointment I have with myself for training days.
Another of the best things about this whole racing thing? Being able to say, I can do a 5k. I can do a 7k. I WILL do a half marathon. This is especially amazing for me, considering my background. I know I have talked about it before...but it really is a huge deal. I grew up overweight. I don't think I was ever "obese" in school, but I was definitely overweight and I definitely avoided physical fitness. I was just not into taking part in the intensely competitive nature of most of my school sports. I liked watching them and supporting them, sure. But to be directly involved? HA! I hated gym class as it was. If we were playing basketball for example, and I missed a shot or didn't catch the ball when thrown to me, there were people who acted like I was the dumbest person on earth and that it was some earth shattering event. Seriously - I distinctly remember being treated as though making a mistake in a gym class game of basketball or softball was equivalent to robbing a little old lady. This in turn made me nervous, which made me hate it. And made me not want to even try. Hence why I skipped out on gym class so much in 8th grade that I failed it and had to repeat it.
And now. All these years later here I am. The overweight girl who was not involved in any sports to speak of, and who hated gym and once even failed out because she skipped so much. And I am becoming fit, and healthy, and I enjoy working out. I have done two 5'ks and a 7k. I am signed up for another 5k in July and a half marathon in June, plus keeping a 5k in May in mind as a possibility. Who would have EVER thought this would be me? Sometimes I wonder, people who knew me way back then - what kind of reactions do they or will they have when they find out that I am a runner? I would be willing to bet SHOCK is one of them...I still have some shock myself.
Shock or not, I am happy and excited to keep going on this journey to good health and fitness. A journey to a healthy body and an active lifestyle. A journey to being a good role model for my children, so that they don't end up struggling like I did!!