"My journey began in July of 2007 when I volunteered at a water stop for the Beach to Beacon. I would not call myself a couch potato, although I am sure others would, but I have been overweight my whole life, as long as I can remember. As I stood and watched the people running and walking the Beach to Beacon, I thought- you know what? I can do this, and I set my sights on running it the next year. I ran my first 5k race that December running in the Jingle Bell Run. At that time I weighed over 250 lbs, since then I have lost more than 60 lbs. I did run the Beach to Beacon in July of 2008, and have run it one other time.
Since that day in July 2007, I have now completed 4 half marathons and countless other races including just completing my 4th LL Bean July 4th 10k- with my best time ever, and not only that I actually fit into women's fitted XL running shirt- something I could barely believe! In May I completed my first Sprint Triathlon and have 2 more planned for this year, including an Olympic Distance Triathlon in September.
My journey has had its ups and downs. After my first half marathon, I didn't run for almost 2 months, I wanted nothing to do with running- I had driven so hard for the goal of running those 13.1 miles, that putting on my sneakers after was just an awful thought for me. So I started to change up my routine, I started swimming, and started taking Tae Kwon Do, where I've earned my red belt and am now working toward my black belt.
And I eventually got back to running and set different goals- increasing speed and doing different events. And with each of the events, with each of the races I finished, I gained confidence. I started doing things I had never imagined doing.. like taking Tae Kwon Do, and competing in fighting competitions. I also started running with other people- for the longest time I would only train by myself because I didn't want to run with anyone else for fear I would slow them down or they would think my breathing was funny, or some other crazy excuse- now I run with people of all different speeds for training- some who run my speed, some I need to run slower so they can run at their pace, and even some that run much faster than me and push me to the point of almost throwing up.. And then there is that whole wearing a wet suit in front of other people- what fat person does that!?!? And that's just it- I'm not that fat person anymore.. I'm a better version of me.
I think the thing that surprises me most, is when I run into people in town and they say things like- you're that woman I see running all the time, or when stopping in the local market in town someone says- you inspire me- how did you do it, how did you lose the weight? And I say- I started running. And when they say to me, which they often say, I can't run, I have bad knees- I say that's okay- just start moving- find the thing you love to do, and just do that- and the rest will come. After those moments I think to myself- wow- that's not what this was all about- never has been.. it was about me- setting a goal, about getting healthier, about changing my life and making sure I was around for my daughter, I never meant to inspire anyone,
So what's next? Well this year is the year of the triathlon.. but next year.. next year I've committed to running the Marine Corp Marathon.. 2013 with be the year of the Marathon... "