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More Determined Than Ever

Posted Jun 19 2013 9:00am

Gather round, friends. It’s time for a story.

Back in February, my beloved Chicago Marathon opened its registration. And the website repeatedly crashed. I tried and tried to register, but it wasn’t meant to be. They ended up suspending registration and opening up a lottery. Unfortunately, I have no luck and did not get in to the race.

That’s when our story gets a little crazy. After hearing rave reviews from friends, I signed up for the Twin Cities Marathon. There was just one problem.

The Twin Cities Marathon has a course limit of 6 hours.

tc finish line

You guys, the name of this blog is Forward is a Pace for a reason. I am happy to be moving towards the finish line on race day, at any speed. My best marathon time — on a warm day, but one that I was having the time of my life and truly running my heart out — is 6:08:54.

So I signed up, and I told people I was doing the race, but inside I was freaking out. I knew that with a real commitment to training, I could make six hours happen. I also wasn’t sure if I was up for that kind of commitment.

Marathon training got closer and closer, and I still talked about it. I wrote down my training plan, in all its color-coded glory. Inside, I was still doubting.

The first days of marathon training happened to fall on a week where I was quite busy. My amazing Team Challenge team here in Illinois was getting ready for our first hometown race, and I had a lot of participants and a lot of things to do! Naturally, training got pushed aside.

Sometimes, you have to skip your run so you can eat pancakes with your team before their big race.

Sometimes, you have to skip your run so you can eat pancakes with your team before their big race. (Well, half your team anyway.)

Today, two weeks after I should have began my training, I got the kick in the pants I needed. Of course, I’m sure Ali didn’t intend for her blog post to get me moving, but it did.

Ali’s battle with Crohn’s is a reminder that these days where I am feeling good are precious, and that it can be so much worse than I’ve ever experienced. So today, and every training day until October 6, I’ll be lacing up my shoes for Ali, and everyone else who can’t.

#sweatingforali - Some of Ali's friends in New York started this trend. I'm hopping on the bandwagon, for sure.

#sweatingforali – Some of Ali’s friends in New York started this trend. I’m hopping on the bandwagon, for sure.

It starts small. Just 3 easy miles on today’s schedule, and I found my legs traveling the slightly hilly route at a speedy clip, just so grateful to be out in the sunshine, able to run.

Okay, speedy for me.

Okay, speedy for me.

What this long, rambling post is attempting to say is this: I’m all in. Six hours or bust, Twin Cities. It’s on.

Are you taking on any challenges lately? Tell me!

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