It’s been a while since I ran my first marathon on Jan. 10 at Walt Disney World, but I still think about it often for many reasons.
I’ve never been a sports enthusiast, but as I have aged I realized simply that if I wanted to eat all the yummy foods I enjoy, I needed some way to burn those calories.
Running was simply the easiest way to do that, and I felt it wouldn’t take much planning to lace up the sneakers and walk out the door.
I first began my training to run in the race hosted by WESH-TV news anchorman Jim Payne. I realized there’s also a group of employees at WESH that run in many of the Track Shack races throughout the year.
After running Payne’s 5K, I decided to try a 10K, and then a half marathon.
Even after the half marathon, it was a big step to take on a full marathon, but my interest was piqued.
I began looking at training programs, and they seemed do-able, so I just started one and knew that if I was going to complete the marathon, it would be at Disney.
I signed up, and the only thing left was crossing the finish line.
I ran the Disney Marathon and my time was 5:16:16. I had hoped to keep it under five hours, but there will be more races in the future.
I learned a lot during my training and race that I feel can be incorporated into the way I view my job.
The biggest lesson learned has to be that almost everything is achievable if you just break it down into small steps. I never believed I would run a marathon, and even as I stood at the starting line, there was a bit of doubt about if I would make it to the finish. But by breaking the training down into 16 weeks of training runs, it all worked out, and I felt pretty good throughout the race.
When faced with tasks that seem daunting, I’ll always look at how the job can be broken down to achieve the desired product.
During the training, I ended up hurting my back in early November. That resulted in me having to put my training on a brief hold and make some visits to the chiropractor — and I even tried acupuncture.
I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get back on track and get enough miles logged before race day.
At one point, I just had to learn to trust that I had been running for a long time and needed to have faith in my abilities. It’s another thing to remember on those days when work is coming in fast and furious and it seems like you can’t catch up.
Running isn’t for everyone, but I believe there is some type of physical activity out there for all of us. While it may seem like hard work, the payoff is better health, better sleep and better attitude.
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