On May 5th, the day after Star Wars day, I ran my first half-marathon, and the Force was with me. Thirteen-point-one miles, give or take. We climbed two mountains, then ran (or slid) down the other sides. I had so much mud caked to my legs that I had to use a pumice-stone to scrape it off in the bath later. It was AWESOME. I’ve been training for my 70.3 Ironman with road runs, which this definitely wasn’t. Most of the race we couldn’t really run, especially if we didn’t want to slide off the side of the mountain. I was having a good time, but I kept worrying about how many people I’d passed, and how many had passed me. Especially on the last big descent, I kept wondering, Am I the last one out here? It bugged me, and it wasn’t until about mile 10 that I figured out why. My fifth grade teacher used to make us run laps around the schoolyard. The last person to finish was always hauled up to the front of the class. My teacher would announce the name of the last arrival, pointing out that we were the slowest of our peers and reminding everyone that the straggler had to spend their recess running an extra lap. The ‘loser’ was given the title of Ping for the Day, in reference to classic kid’s book, and I was Ping a LOT. Eventually I got my doctor to excuse me from this activity because I hated always getting called out in front of everyone. I don’t know what this experience was supposed to teach us, but what I learned was that being the last was shameful. Embarrassing. Bad. That it was better quit before I started than risk public humiliation. And as I slid down the mountain on Sunday, no longer a fifth grader, I realized that I actually didn’t care if I was the last person on the trail, because by God, I was going to finish, and I was going to finish strong. Most people I know don’t sign up for this craziness. Some people who DID sign up for the race never showed. Even if I was the last person — even if I was the last by A LOT — at least I’d have done it. Before May 5th, the 13.1 was my Schrödinger’s cat. I could both do it and not do it. Now the uncertainty is resolved, because I did finish, and I was still running when I crossed the finish line. And for the record, I wasn’t last, but I’m really proud of whoever was, because they’re still hardcore.
Greetings, fellow nature lovers!
On June 22, 2018, I decided it was time to make a change. I was overweight, low-energy, depressed, and going crazy. I felt awful. So I decided it was time to start watching what I ate, get my butt in gear, and get moving.
This June 22, I will be competing in my first sprint triathlon as part of my training program for the 70.3 Maine. I don't know that I would be here if it wasn't for my love of the Sierra Club -- what kind of maniac signs up for a 70.3 on a whim? This one, I guess, because I believe in the causes the Sierra Club supports, their outreach, their education, and their results.
As of today, I'm less than $300 from my fundraising goal, and with your help I hope to hit that goal by that magical date, June 22.
78 days until race day. See you there!
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Just a quick refresher on the Ironman 70.3: In August, I will be representing Team Sierra in a triathlon that consists of...
1.2 miles of open-ocean swimming
56 miles of biking
13.1 miles of running
... back-to-back-to-back in under 8.5 hours. I'm doing this to support Team Sierra, and your backing means a lot!
The quilt raffle is over. EMILY M. is the winner! More updates coming, now that the weather is nice, and thank you so much to everyone who has donated already.