Monday, March 24, 2014

Another Half Marathon!

Let me first start by saying this was a fantastic weekend.  It was full of adventure and milestones.  From celebrating my 17th anniversary, spending time on the track at my daughter's first track meet of the season to running my 3rd half marathon, it was awesome!

It's been two years since I've run a half marathon.  I took two years off to focus on finishing my graduate degree and taking care of my health.  Sometimes you have to put your priorities in order and say "no" to some things.  I decided in January to run another half marathon because it would be a great way to lose my holiday weight and get back in shape.  It also causes you to depend heavily on your inner strength that is fueled by faith.

Pushing yourself to reach your goals is the most rewarding feeling.



Ready to start the race!
 

I went into this race knowing that I wanted to finish my personal best.  I felt it could be accomplished with the help of a wonderful friend who agreed to be my pacer.  She's a no nonsense kinda woman who wouldn't let me fall short of my goal.  I wanted to push my body to perform better than it had in the past. 

I've been fortunate to train in cool weather.  My body was used to cool morning runs with low humidity.  Yesterday's weather was very different from my training.  Within the first 10 minutes I was sweating like crazy and fading fast in the high humidity.  I needed the prayers of my friends and family.  I felt way too hot at the start of the race and I couldn't fathom how I would finish 13.1 miles. 


After a few miles, I no longer felt dizzy.  I could feel the prayers of my friends and family.  Mile 6 to 9, was great on the course.  My body relaxed and I felt good.  Then the clouds moved and the sun beamed....

It drained me.  Mile 10 and 11 were probably my hardest along the journey.  It's the part of the race when you have to tell your body we are doing this and you better not quit.  You pray hard and try to breathe deep.  By mile 12, my husband and son were in earshot distance and their energy fueled me.  Just hearing them caused my eyes to well up with tears.  By the last 1/2 mile, I only had 6 minutes to hit my goal of crossing the finish line in my record time.  I could hear Donna yelling at me, "you've got to sprint!"  I'm not a sprinter by any means but I gave it my all.  Within minutes it was finished!  I accomplished my goal!

Then the unexpected happened......


Receiving treatment


I couldn't breathe.  I was trying so hard but it felt like there wasn't any air coming in.  I was in tears.  Part joy and part anguish.  Fortunately the ambulance was right at the finish line and I found enough strength to walk over.  After 15 minutes of oxygen, water and a banana, I felt a little better.  I'm quite certain, sitting in the sun for 8 hours the day before during the track meet, was not the best for me.  It drained my energy and I didn't realize it.

I'm thankful that I have the strength to train and complete a half marathon.  God is so mighty in His ability to sustain us through the toughest of situations.  It's unfortunate that some of us never give him a chance.  (Posted by Renee)

Hebrews 12:1-3 (MSG)

Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!
 
 

6 comments:

  1. Honey, I am so proud of you and missed our talks. Keep up the good work. I am cheering you on though social media!!!
    Go, Renee Go...

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    1. Thanks Rosie! I always appreciate the support. Blessings!

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  2. Congratulations. I'm glad you were able to receive the proper medical assistance and are now doing well. I'm inspired by your determination and strength to complete another half marathon. I wanted to do one but became discouraged because I've never been athletic and have only done a few 5Ks. Even with the 3.1 miles I become tired and winded. But reading I this has made me want to get back on track and reach my goal. You did it so why can't I.....back to training I go.

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    1. Tameka, thanks for your comment. I was never athletic either. I never played a sport in high school. I didn't start running until 2003 when I completed my first 5K. In 2011, a girlfriend asked me to run a half marathon and that's when I started down that path.

      Find a good running group. One that will inspire you. I love my "Black Girls Run" group in my area. They are always encouraging no matter what your fitness level. Take baby steps so that you can enjoy the journey. I just sent you a FB message with some other resources. You can do it! I want to hear the testimony of your first race completion!

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  3. Goooo Renee!!!! So happy for you. Excited (not surprised) that you were able to get it done after a 2 yr hiatus. I've had the breathlessness and exercise induced asthma symptoms after sprinting and giving it all I had. I know you gave it your all. Continue to be an inspiration. I'm taking a small break from running until I begin training for Space Coast. Looking forward to keeping up with your journey. Blessing!

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    1. Hope, I'm happy I'm not the only one that felt that way. Roslyn also had a similar incident. I only had to get oxygen. I didn't need albuterol. Been taking it easy this week. Yoga, stretching and light walking are the orders for the week.

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