Thursday, November 27, 2014



I joined the track team in the seventh grade, and ever since, I've identified myself as a runner.  I ran cross country and track all through high school, recreationally in college and as a young adult, then kind of fell off the running wagon when I got pregnant with Caroline.  In between pregnancies, I half-heartedly trained for a few races, sporadically run from time to time, and to be honest, kind of lost the love.

But this year, I slowly began picking it back up.  A few miles here, a run at the gym there.  I completed the Couch to 10K program, and then ran a 10K in March with some friends. Strangely enough, I began to find myself yearning for the pavement again.  Joey and I ambitiously signed up for The Triple Peach, a series of races in Atlanta this summer and fall.  We ran the Peachtree Road Race in July, a 10K, The Atlanta 10-miler in October, and today we capped off the trifecta with the Thanksgiving Day Half Marathon.

These races have pushed me beyond what I thought I was capable of.  Over the past few years, I've stopped telling people that I'm a runner.  When talking about running or races, I'd say "I used to run."  I came up with so many excuses and justifications for not running.  I have too many kids.  It's too hard to schedule runs.  I don't have time.  I've gained too much weight.  I felt sad, because I felt like a small part of my identity was gone.

But as selfish as it may sound, running is one of the only things in my life that's mine and mine alone.  It's my alone time; my quiet time.  I love running because you get out what you put in.  Today I smiled through half of my race because I was so ecstatic just be out there.

I ended up beating my best half marathon time by seven minutes!  I crossed the finish line and almost burst into tears because I was so happy.  I really and truley never thought I'd find the joy in running again.  But after today, I'm already excited about my next race.

My heart is full of gratitude today.  For the ability to run, for the time to run, and for my husband and mother-in-law for helping out with the kids so I could fit in my training runs.  I hope that you all had a wonderful, healthy and happy Thanksgiving.


Josie said...

Congratulations on your accomplishment! I ran the same race yesterday. I'm glad you've found joy in running again! :)

Josie said...

congratulations josie! it's such an empowering feeling to get back in sync with your body...especially when it comes to running. i took an extended break from distance running and recently completed my first half in four years and it felt great.

Josie said...

Congrats! I didn't pick up running until after Preston came along and having 3 kids so close together I needed something that was mine. I totally understand and can so related to that.

Josie said...

It makes me so happy to hear you so happy! You are so amazing to me for so many reasons. Now I add running to the list. I wish I loved to run. I keep trying. When I'm running Tuesday, I will remind myself of what you said, "You get out what you put in." I think that will give me just the motivation I need to keep working.

Josie said...

aw, you're so sweet, Kesley :) Thank you. PS I owe you an email! I'm so behind!!

Josie said...

Wendy you are one of my inspirations for running. I love that you picked it up after you had kids and make the time for it. You are awesome!!

Josie said...

I loved reading about your training! Congrats on your PR, speedy!!

Josie said...

The wind was killer, but it definitely felt good to run! Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

Josie said...

I meant to comment on this weeks ago, but with three young kids. I am so happy for your running success!! I can totally relate to falling out with running for a bit. Same thing happened with me and spending about 5 years building our family. It is so worth it to make time for something you love, especially such a healthy habit. I ran my first half in five years just 6 months after giving birth to our third. Not my fastest half, but it was so good to have something else to define myself with...cook, housekeeper, etc. gets a little overwhelming sometimes. ;)

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