I'm the girl who used to fake cramps to get out of gym class as often as possible (I think the nurse was tracking my periods just like I was). I detested everything about it other than the one or two magical weeks in which it was the "Dance" unit. But every time my gym teachers declared it was "Presidential Physical Fitness Test" time, I literally had to fight back tears and found myself dreaming of timely fire drills. The whole thing made me feel like I should be wearing a FAILURE sign around my neck.
The worst part of those physical fitness tests was the running portion. I hated running with a passion. I was instantly out of breath and walked most of it. I didn't know I could run more than a block until I was 47 years old. Partially because I was also the girl who wrestled with eating disorders and food addiction in general. After awhile I was constantly fatigued, ate myself into either food comas or nervous shaking, my brain was foggy, and aches, pains, and illnesses started setting in.
I was also incredibly stuck in my comfort zone and terrified to leave it.
But I guess what I'm trying to urge you to do is never say never.
Life holds so much possibility and you just never ever know
what can happen if you stay open to it....
On July 23, 2012 I had never heard of an ultramarathon and I had gotten myself to the point where I could run a maximum of one mile. Very. Very. Slowly. Like you could've probably walked as fast as I was running. That was after a year of getting in shape. At that time I was the single mother of three teenagers, a social worker with foster and adoptive families, and on a quest to get healthy, stop being ruled by fear and start living. [Besides just getting through the day...] I was sick and tired of feeling stuck, sick and tired. On July 24, 2012 I went on a date with an ultramarathon running, construction company owning, bow hunting guy named Bill. By 13 months later I found myself married to him and working for the family business, with two adult bonus daughters.
Now Bill's whole running thing has become part of my life too. It affects how we eat, sleep, work, play, worship, and share our lives with loved ones. I'm one of his crew members for races through deserts, forests, beaches and streets across the U.S. I'm also one of his workout partners, and no one could be more shocked that I've become a bonafide runner too ... the overjoyed finisher of 5k's and 10k's, with the goal of running a half marathon in 2015 (*UPDATE: I finished for the Nashville Half Marathon on November 14, 2015!).
But this blog isn't just about running.
I've come to realize that ultramarathons are a metaphor for life. An ultra is a race longer than a 26.2 mile marathon. Bill has participated in ultras ranging from 50k to 200 miles. Life, for most of us, also lasts a long time and it's not easy. Sometimes just showing up is the hardest part, and we can make a lot of it easier or harder depending on our preparation and choices. Maybe the best part about both life and long distance running is that there's always time to regroup and finish stronger.
How? Self-care of the mind, body, soul, & spirit.
My family and friends have had a lot of questions about my many changes [or as my mother says, "Who are you and what have you done with my daughter?" :)] and Bill's fascinating "hobby." I thought a blog would be a great way to get that information out, keep myself accountable to my own goals, give others a safe place to come for support and encouragement to achieve your own dreams, and support causes that are important to us.
So basically this whole blog is about Cinderella stories.
Mine, Bill's, yours, and the people we meet along the way.
* I am not a medical or nutrition professional. I'll share what works for my husband and I, and it is based on the most sound, healthy, and safe information we think we find.