After running a marathon six years ago when my son Dom got leukemia, I always thought I would train for another one at some point. Time passed, and after a year or two, I didn’t run anymore. I let myself off the hook telling myself that I didn’t need to run. I felt that yoga and lifting weights at the gym were enough. And they were, for a while. But then I turned 49 and I started to gain a bit of weight. Not enough for most people to see, but my tummy got a little more fat on it and my butt didn’t fit into my jeans anymore. I tried a lot of things to slim back down like fasting and eating less, but alas, the fat didn’t budge!
Recently, Nicole and Kate, two of the beautiful young women who work for Pure Joy Planet, started training for a marathon. They encouraged me to join them but I sweetly declined, telling them I didn’t want to mess up my hormones, I’m too slow, blah, blah, blah. I enviously watched them train for a couple weeks, as they would often train together and come back happy and sweaty. I started to think about running again. Then, ever the enthusiast, Nicole said, “Why don’t you just train for a 10-mile race? There is one coming up in September in Oracle.” My ears perked up and I said, “10 miles? I can do that.”
So now, it’s been 2 weeks and I’ve been running 3 times per week. I started by just running 1 1/2 miles. Now I’m up to 4 miles. The funny thing is, I am absolutely loving it! I love how strong I feel. I’ve already noticed a lot more muscle tone in my entire body, and even though the scale hasn’t changed much, I’m replacing fat with muscle.
Today, I went out shopping for clothes, and the sales girl kept saying, “No, that’s going to be too big on you!” She was right, the smaller sizes fit! I came home with a new summer wardrobe and a new affinity for my body.
Not only am I stronger, more toned, and in a better mood daily, my body is slimming down, and my muscles (especially on my arms and abs) are visible.
I think that I’m going to end up going more than that 10-mile distance. I now have the ambition to run a 1/2 marathon in Moab, Utah in November.
See you on the trails!
Cactus photo credit: Mark Short