Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sometimes Its About More Than Setting Records...

Today was the anticipated Cellcom Half Marathon... the ULTIMATE event that I have been training for for months and months. Many long runs were dedicated to this day ... it was going to perfect ... and I was going to PR ....

Unfortunately, Mother Nature had another plan for me! I woke up this morning to 44 degrees and HORRIBLE winds. No seriously like 20-25mph sustained with gusts up to 40 according to the weather guy! Sun was shining... and I was freaking out! I couldnt even decide what to wear ... but I knew one thing I was going to wear. An old sweatshirt .... well more about that later I promise!

 The race started off and we were doing great! At 3 miles we were at a great pace. The wind was noticeable but not too bad. At mile 5 I kinda started to slow down ... a mini wall if you will have it. I struggled a bit but pushed on. The wind got stronger... at mile 6.5 they gave us oranges. After sucking the juice out of 2 oranges, shortly after I felt completely and totally amazing. I cruised until about mile 9 .... the wind was getting stronger, but we were mostly out of it. That was until mile 10...
Mile 10 started a long stretch into the wind... one short turn at mile 11 and then back into the wind. I just couldnt do it... I had to add alot of extra walking... at one point I was soo frustrated I almost started to cry. However, my running partner said "seriously you better not be crying" and that was the end of my pity party. I decided then and there that I wasnt going to PR .... but I was going to finish no matter what.

At mile 12.5ish we ran into the tunnels and into Lambeau Field. The half marathoners were on the left being passed by the full marathoners ..... OMG they were sooo fast just breezing by us and not looking like it was hard for them at all. I ran a good portion in Lambeau Field... it was rather surreal by that point... and then back out of the stadium... and then it was over. 3hours 21minutes 56 seconds. Definately NOT the PR I was looking for (3:16:38) .... but then I started to think about some things.

Sure it wasnt a PR ... but it actually was faster than Miami my first half marathon... which was run in perfect gorgeous weather. I was growing... I dont think I could have finished before. Then I heard that the elite marathoner complained about the wind slowing her down by 6 minutes.... well geez if the elite marathoner was slowed down by the wind.... I guess I dont feel so bad! Besides ... less than 1% of the population has actually completed a half or full marathon. I guess I just have ever more to work on for August, right?

Now back to that sweatshirt..... that is the best part of the day. When trying to decide what to wear alot of people said get a sweatshirt that you can throw away. Well I didnt have any ... my husband didnt have any. He went into the closet and came out with my old fleece jacket from my former employer. You know the one... the one that threw my away after a corporate takeover. The one that devastated my life one year ago .... that fleece jacket used to be my favorite jacket (and it looked great) but since leaving the company I have not worn it. I ever tried to remove the embroidery to no avail.

Well that jacket ... that used to fit and look great ... looks sooo big its silly! I wore that for the start of the race... and somewhere around mile 1 I threw it off to the side of the road (to be donated to the homeless) .... and under that sweatshirt was the thinner, healthier me. Honestly I felt incredible after shunning that jacket. That jacket was part of the old me.... new me just completed my THIRD half marathon!

God I love my life.... I love all of my friends who tracked me during the race! I love all of the people who say that I motivate them. One year ago I didnt think I would ever motivate someone... and certainly not with my running. My career is on track ... my life is on track .... and life is wonderful!


  1. Awesome story! Love the bit about throwing away the old fleece. Perfect! You done good.

  2. Loved reading your blog - what a journey you are on and I look forward to reading your discoveries from life and your marathons!

  3. Great Job AnnMarie! You do encourage a lot of people and you have traveled a road that few people have the courage to even start!

  4. Beautiful story!! I ran my first HM last weekend in Door County, I came down yesterday to cheer everyone on! You were awesome!!!

  5. Thanks for sharing your experience. What a great story. Keep believing in yourself and anything is possible.

  6. Congrats! I saw you post this on the Cellcom Fan Page on Facebook. I love running.. but hate the mental game of times and PRs. Why did we do that to ourselves? This was my first half.. I actually quit 2 months ago thinking that since I couldn't run it that I wasn't going to do it at all. I changed my plan and did a walk/run plan.. end up at 3:39:57 - but as you may know, that time will be adjusted down :) Congrats to you. When I was depressed because I knew my time was going to suck when the race first started I changed my attitude and said "hold on! Half of Green Bay is still sleeping at 7am on a Sunday morning" We must learn to give ourselves credit! Thanks for the great post!

  7. Pat yourself on the back every time you exercise. Push yourself in what you do, whatever you, but do something. Do what makes you happy whether that's running races or running with friends around the neighborhood. Please know, I'm living proof exercise will change your life if you make it part of your life everyday like brushing your teeth. Feel bad about the days you stay in bed, but don't ever feel bad about a time in a race.

  8. I, too, found your blog from the Cellcom GB Marathon FB page. You have so much to be proud of! What an amazing accomplishment, especially considering those brutal winds. You did awesome! Congratulations to you!

  9. You, like my sister, DeeDee motivate me! She ran her Cellcom GB half marathon. This was my first time! She also lost a lot of weight and had turned herself physically, emotionally, and psychologically into a much healthier person. Great job, AnnMarie!!