Things I Learned From Completing My Second Half-Marathon
(My sister Dianna on the left, me in the center, my friend Meghan on the right)
I recently ran my second half marathon, and I managed to pick up a cold a few days before the race. As if running a half wasn’t difficult enough, I quickly realized with a negative change in my breathing capacity and my mental clarity this was going to be quite the challenge. If I was going to complete this half, it called for a change of goals from running the whole time to finishing the race and being okay with walking. The morning of the race I carried around a box of tissues, swallowed some ibuprofen and Sudafed, put on my sparkly headband, and travelled to the start of the race.
Train your mind for the run and your body will take care of the rest
When I ran distance high school track, my coach would always say “PMA” (Positive Mental Attitude) when running became tough whether it was because we were tired or the weather was undesirable. I believe that sometimes we forget the greatness that resides in each of us by putting mental limits on what we can and cannot do. Knowledge is power and by having a PMA, I am able to accomplish more by knowing that my body is capable, further connecting my mind and body together. Try this out next time the going gets rough.
Having a great support system makes all the difference
I am fortunate to be surrounded by loving and supporting people. After moving back to PA in the fall, it took me some time to realize all of these wonderful support people. I ran the race with my lovely sister and dear friend. I know that I leaned on both of them to help me through to the end. Additionally, my dad came up to cheer us on and take pictures. It’s awesome to see a familiar face in the crowd knowing that he took time out of his day to support me. Surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you.
Take pride in even the smallest accomplishments
Celebrate! I made it out of bed today and successfully got ready for the run. Woohoo! Many people have this as their everyday routine but for others, it can be difficult to get going. Today, I ran the whole 13.2 miles and PR’ed (personal record)! I’m a rockstar! Sometimes people can be unaware of how great it is to have a healthy body. I have a cold, and it was difficult at times, but it is amazing what your body and mind can do together. Additionally, I was able to walk up and down a flight of stairs after the run. Crushing it! This mobility can be something people take for granted. Acknowledge all of the small things you do/complete throughout the day; tell yourself you are awesome and amazing.
It is not always easy to remember these three things, and if I pay enough attention, I can see that they transcend throughout my life. Celebrate for it is not about waiting for the rain to pass but learning to dance in the rain.