One of my running mates sent me a text yesterday asking if I was up for a run that evening. I immediately responded that I was still sick and didn't think it was a good idea. On this same day, we got an e-mail from our Team In Training campaign manager updating us on the condition of our honored teammate Alyssa. An honored teammate isn't someone who necessarily runs or trains but someone we run for, someone to give us motivation, and remind us as to why we raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Alyssa, a 6 year-old-little girl who was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2007 had recently undergone surgery to help correct seizures she was experiencing as a result of her medication. Thanks be to God, the e-mail said Alyssa was doing just fine. This e-mail also made me think, "Wow, a 6-year-old little girl just went through all of this and here I am worried about a run."
I text my running mate back and agreed to run. There I was 30 minutes later at her front door ready to hit the pavement for the first time in 23 days! I decided to treat myself and download the Nike+ GPS app to my I Phone for a little motivation. If you own an I Phone, this is an app I highly recommend!
Our run was great, chatted a bit and even though we had to stop a few times, it was still nice to be out there again. My body felt a bit heavy (I refuse to step on the scale but definitely feel it in my clothes...something I expected from not working out all this time.) Regardless, I have to admit, I still felt on top of the world...this feeling didn't last very long.
Day 2...R-U-S-T-Y! I did this run alone, inspired once again to use my cool new app only this time minus the cheers. I was at a good pace the first three-quarters of a mile but started to notice myself getting progressively slower and told myself to push through it...and then there it was...the walk break at about a mile and a half. All I kept thinking was, "I've done two half marathons before, I can push through 3 miles!"
I picked up the pace and kept going but hit another slump. Somewhere after mile 2 I fell hard but luckily I've retained my volleyball skills from high school. I did the old, tuck and roll and bounced right back up and kept going. Then, it started to sprinkle...really? It was just not my day was it?
I made it home a slow 3.4 miles later. I felt a bit defeated. How was I going to be marathon ready if a short 3.4 miles had me this down? To make matters worse, when I walked in the door, I noticed a small scuff on my hand. Within a matter of seconds, I remembered Alyssa and my cousin Sam who I just so happened to see today for a brief moment. These young ladies did not let cancer defeat them! I remembered Alyssa's big smile that was shared with us in a photo after surgery with God knows how many stitches across her head. I also remembered Sam and how her hair is slowly growing back. And that's the lesson we all need to carry with us in life. We cannot let something defeat us! We are stronger than we know. If all the Alyssa's and Sam's of this planet could give us just an ounce of their strength and courage, we'd push ourselves beyond unimaginable limits and conquer the world. Thanks for the inspiration ladies! LA Marathon...I will not be defeated!