a while back i got this wild idea to run a half marathon (i think it started on the cruise with my girlfriends this summer, when i read an article about endurance training, and thought, huh… i’ve been training for things all year… but endurance… that’s something new…) everyone kept telling me it’s a mental challenge as much as a physical one. my girlfriend jocelita said, “maybe just think of a different person at every mile…” so i filed that little nugget away.
a month before the race, i made a list. i was going to run 13.1 miles, so i chose 13 people that had made the biggest impact on my first year in town. here’s the run-down…
|From 2009 Fall|
mile 1: aimeesita. 7.48. this was my fastest mile (downhill and pumped up). aimeesita is so many things to me, but she is always my designated hug for the day. without her, i could go a whole week hugless!
mile 2: anniebananie. 8:47. anniebananie shares my office and therefore my craziness. she listens to me whether she wants to or not. sometimes she acts like my mom, but she never gets upset with me. love!
mile 3: chip dinero. 8:42. chip dinero is my mentor. he’s been there for lots of up’s and down’s this year. i look up to him muchisimo.
mile 4: danimal. 9:12 (pace is slowing… uphill). not only did danimal introduce me to sweet pepper bear, but he also taught me to rake leaves and he manages my fantasy football team… which is winning. most generous guy i know!
mile 5: farrellita. 8:40. farrellita intimidated me when i first met her because she is so cool. now she, her hubby and her baby are like family to me. her back porch (with a glass of wine in my hand) is probably my favorite place in town.
mile 6: hi-mey. 9:24. i met hi-mey up at farrellita’s cabin last spring. we hit it off immediately. i love him so much, i introduced him to the best girl i know. and he asked her to marry him. she said yes. and there was much rejoicing.
mile 7: jocelita. 9:13. jocelita is one of the biggest cheer leaders i know. she was biking all over the course on her stylin’ yellow wheels, cheering peeps on left and right. she inspires me!
mile 8: juan. 9:12. juan is my boss. i often say i want to be like all the priests i work for when i grow up, but i especially want to be like juan. he’s got more wisdom and insight than peeps twice his age. and he’s a tree hugger.
mile 9: julia. 9:37. julia was one of my first real girlfriends here. she taught me to ride with clipless pedals, and was there for my first fall. she later told me she was hoping to be the mile that includes the toughest hill on the course, and she was… well… half way…
mile 10: latissimus. 9:55. my slowest mile on the course. in part because it included the other half of the toughest hill, but also because i had to stop and hug hi-mey and wave to anniebananie, who were waiting on the course, cheering for me. YES! latissimus introduced me to 1/3 of the peeps i know here, drove me around the first 3 car-less months i lived here, and then taught me to drive stick when i finally did buy a car. other than dating, he’s pretty much awesome
mile 11: lindensita. 9:37. lindensita’s stretch of the race was actually perfect, as it’s the same stretch we “speed walked” the day i told her i wanted to be a priest. she was the first friend i told… the guinea pig. and she didn’t freak out! linden gets the mountain girl in me.
mile 12: maria carolina. 9:52. mi amor, mc! this chica started the monday night girls’ group that has become my sacred space each week. we have some crazy similarities, meaning she makes me feel understood in a way few people can.
mile 13: sloandawg. i don’t know that i actually stopped my watch when i crossed the finish. sloandawg, i think, has put up with my very worst, and she’s been there for some of my best moments too. she ran my first 10k and my first triathlon with me. she lets me repeat stories over and over, and she put up with the bulk of my culture shock when i moved here. i love her. she’s also engaged to hi-mey.
|From 2009 Fall|
in the end, i finished the race in 2:00:11. my goal was to get as close to 2 hours as possible, so 11 seconds over is pretty stinkin’ close! i was very pleased. and dad was standing at the finish line waiting for me with a great big hug. as were jocelita and jota.
jota is someone else i need to thank. he has made running fun, as has the whole running club.
sarita also gets a shout-out for biking all over the course to cheer me (and others) on!
lorita too, who could not be there, as she was cheering on her hubby in his first ironman race, but who coached me through every one of my long runs leading up to the race… she’s one of my new favorite people. and her watch, which usually beeps at us when we run uphills, was beeping in my head, reminding me to slow up a little on those uphill stretches.
all in all, it was an epic day, i finally earned a real medal (YAY!!!), and we closed out the festivities with a dinner party for the 13 and their dates. thanks to chef dad.
thank you, thank you, thank you for all who encouraged me along the way, and especially for all who have made this town HOME to me.