Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get There

This morning at 10:00 AM, I got to submit my application to run the Boston Marathon in April of 2016. I will be waiting to receive an email sometime in the next week that will either confirm my spot, or regretfully inform me that the race filled up with people who are faster than me, and I didn’t make the cut.

Yesterday, on my family’s drive to church, I told my husband that I got to apply to register for Boston today. I was explaining the process to him when my 9 year old son, Liam, overheard the conversation and said, “If Mom qualifies, do we get to go to a Red Sox game?!” I quickly corrected him and said that I DID qualify, I just wasn’t sure I was going to be chosen to run it yet. Let’s ignore the fact that going to a Red Sox game would definitely be the highlight of my husband’s trip to Boston as well as my sons’…

And then the “tough love” started:

How much did you beat your qualifying time by?
I can’t believe you walked.
If I would’ve been there I wouldn’t have told you it was “okay” because I know you could have kept running.

My husband REALLY believes in me (probably more than I believe in myself…) …but he doesn’t believe in not giving your all or in giving up.

I quickly became defensive though:

That was a 20 minute PR for me!
I was by myself! Everyone else had pacers jumping in the race and helping them stay focused.
I still qualified!

Since the Bayshore Marathon, where I finished 1 minute and 1 second under my qualifying time, I have put a lot of thought into whether or not I gave it my all. Could I have finished faster? Did I really need to walk? What happened?

And the only answer I can honestly give is that I could have done better. It really wasn’t my body that was falling apart, it was the thoughts in my head. They convinced me that the wind was too strong, my pace was too slow, and I couldn’t do it.

So, as I filled out my online application this morning, I was filled with a mixture of emotions. First, I was super excited to even be getting the chance to fill out the application. Because, in the end, I DID qualify for the Boston Marathon. A feat that just 1 year ago, I did not think I would ever accomplish. And when I saw this post from a fellow runner in my Instagram feed today, it made me appreciate that opportunity even more. 

Because I know it is not an easy accomplishment, and there are many people who have tried and just missed the mark, and many more people who wish they could even attempt it, but are physically unable. So for that, I am beyond thankful.

Determination is another emotion that I’m filled with today. I know my husband is right. I can run faster. I can be stronger, mentally and physically. When I crossed the finish line at the Bayshore Marathon I had tears in my eyes. And when my sister asked me why I was crying, I said, “Because I don’t want to do this again! I don’t want to run this fast. It’s not fun.”  Even at that point I didn’t say I “can’t” do this again. I just didn’t want to. Because it’s not easy. In fact, it’s really, really hard. 

But Boston is something I want. I mean, I really, really want it. And when I get there, the victory will be sweet.

Sparkle.Pounce.Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get There.


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