Thursday, May 19, 2011

Challenge Accepted

Pledge Committment: $2,620
Funds collected to date: $528.40 (20%)
Amount needed to reach pledge: $2,091.60

Running a half marathon is impressive. It just is. For four years running, I have made the yearly promise to myself to pay my $75 and run 13.1 miles. I've done this in 85 degree humid heat and in 40 degrees pouring rain. Both sucked. I was miserable. But I'm a glutton for punishment, so I would sign up the next year to do it again.

For this year's half in Central Park in early April 2011, something changed. I trained appropriately. I ate appropritaely (for approximately 72 hours before the race. Let's not get crazy!) The weather was stunning. I SMILED at the finish line. And then, it was over...and I felt somewhat let down. That was it? Where was the agony and anguish? Shouldn't I be writhing on the ground rather than chowing down on a delicious omelette over brunch?

For those of you who know me well, you may know I can be a bit "competitive" and "crazy" and "out of my freaking mind." I also bore easily. For those of you who don't know me well and who have just wandered in from the InterWeb, welcome to my blog and now you've learned a little bit about me!

With these personality aspects in mind, you will not be surprised that after getting into business school, graduating from business school with a great job, and traveling the world, I am feeling a bit...meh. I'm feeling a bit of the "okay, what's next!" bug. So you will also not be surprised to know that after finishing successfully, in record-time (for me, not for the world), my fourth half-marathon I said to myself: "Self, I think we need a new challenge! Let's do that...twice!" Running a marathon -- specifically the ING NYC Marathon -- was suddenly a must-do for me. I wanted this, and I wanted it bad.

There are four ways to get into the NYC Marathon:

1) Be very fast (we crossed this option off of the list verrrrrry quickly).
2) Run 9 races and volunteer for an additional one -- passing out water or something -- in a calendar year to run the following calendar year. (Nope).
3) Enter in the lottery three years in a row and be turned down. You get in the fourth. (Got rejected for my third year this year).
4) Raise money for charity.

We had a winner.

From there, things moved quickly. I found a great charity called Team for Kids that provides free or low-cost school and community-based health and fitness programs to children who would otherwise have no access to regular physical activity. I will be raising $2,620 -- $100 for every mile I run -- for this deserving organization.

This blog will chronicle my tales in training, and will also serve as an update to my friends and family who have already been so incredibly generous after just one blast email.

So what am I doing now? I am running consistently 10-15 miles a week from now through early July with a couple of cross-training sessions in between to strengthen my muscles. And to fit into bridesmaid dresses. Some killer summer abs wouldn't hurt either...but I'm not holding my breath for that.

I am researching how I'm going to have to change my eating stretching drinking habits (oy) starting soon. Yikes. Eek. Yowzers.

I'm collecting gear (new water bottle and realizing that running a marathon ain't cheap if you want to do it safely and correctly. It's an investment towards my dream, though. And towards being totally baller on November 6th.

So that's all for now. I hope this allows you to live this experience with me and to feel updated on my progress. Or just to allow you something to do at work. Either is fine.

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