My journey began in 2012 when I randomly walked in the kitchen and said I’m going to run a 5K. At that point, I had never ran a day in my life. I was an overweight child growing up and my parents begged me to start walking. I started walking in middle school but never thought about running until after I graduated from high school. The walking helped take some of my childhood weight off but I decided I wanted to push myself further. My first 5K was Burnin Up The Blacktop in Downtown Athens. I finished the race in 42:00 minutes and less then a month later, I finished my second race in 36:08. I have ran every weekend since then. My clock time has always been all over the board and until now I didn’t put much effort in to cutting it down. August 2016 was my turn around point. I decided I wanted to see just how far I could take my weekend running addiction. I started to see that I could place in my age group and I was having fun getting my friends involved in running. Since August I have cut my 5K clock time down from 40 minutes to 32 minutes. I ran a total of 42 races in 2016. I started running 8K’s and in 2017 I have 10K’s and half marathons I have signed up for. One thing is for sure, 5K’s are so addicting and I plan to run a lot more of them in 2017. You are not competing with other runners, you are competing with yourself while getting all the encouragement and support from other runners.
What’s really cool about all of this is I have my whole work team running and walking with me. My friend and I started a running club in November called Dynamic Run Club. We do group runs 2 or 3 times a week and we have people that have never ran before, running with us. It’s really neat to see what the power of running can do for people. My friends are shaving off time on the clock and are placing in their age groups at 5K’s. What’s amazing, is my best friend started running with me and took his 5K time down from 38 minutes to 26 minutes in 4 months. How cool is that?! I always tell him he was made to be a runner. So proud of him and all of the other members in DRC that have taken the step towards a healthier lifestyle. Visit www.letsall.run to learn more about us and to join our team to come run with us!
2016 was also about gaining an awesome running family. I have a lot of amazing people that support me and give me advice about running. I get to see these people every weekend and it makes running so much fun. It’s the support from my friends that keep me going. I was reading an article in a magazine this week about women runners running alone and getting hurt. I thought to myself I very rarely ever run alone. I can always find someone to run and train with. In fact, my best friend is always by my side, so I don’t have to alter my running plans for safety, etc. It’s an awesome feeling knowing I have running buddies all over the state of Georgia! Thank you to everyone who made 2016 such a great year out at races. A big thanks to my bestie who has been supporting me since day 1 when I decided to step up my training and go for the big time! He even stands out in the cold to let me do sprints and times them for me. He has spent countless hours running with me, going to boot camp and looking for races that we can do. My mom also deserves a medal for coming with me to all my races in the heat, rain, cold, and wind to let me run my heart out. She’s my picture taker and pit crew helper! Look for mama B at all my races in 2017 and smile, because she will probably be taking your picture!
I used to sit down and write out my New Year’s Resolutions in hopes of obtaining my goals and aspirations. Since becoming a runner, I don’t need any resolutions. My only goals for 2017 is to run more, get my time down to under 30 minutes in a 5K and complete some half marathons. Before I was a runner, I used to try to achieve a certain weight goal. Now, I am not defined by the numbers on the scale. I eat to fuel my body for these runs. I used to try to get involved with charity, now I run races every weekend that benefit a good cause. Instead of worrying about a list, I lace up my shoes and just go.
Here is what I have coming up for January:
-New Year’s at Noon 5K
-Twilight Stroll at the Granite Bowl 5K
-Warner Robins Air Force Base Half Marathon (MY FIRST HALF)
-Hot Chocolate 5K
-Winterville Snowflake 10K