It is no little surprise that I was stressed about this weekend. I kept saying that I would be happy come Sunday night when it was all over. The weekend I dreaded turned out to be amazing for so many reasons.
Besides the race being a success, I got to hang out with girls I absolutely love during it.
I met my best friend Jess while feeding the ducks with my kids. As a person who has suffered from severe social anxiety in the past I have not always been the most bold when it comes to saying hi to people or starting up conversations, but when I saw Jess feeding popcorn to the ducks and pushing a BOB stroller, I just knew in my heart she must be a runner. I was right. We instantly chatted away and for the first time ever I gave a stranger my email address. I told her to write. She did. We have been friends ever since. We have so much in common I can’t even begin to list it all. What I can say is that when I am down and out, this girl doesn’t run away from me, she calls me more, she emails me more, she offers help more, she listens and understands. She is the definition of a true friend and I love her more with each passing week.
I also got to see Ashley. I met Ashley at the Woodrow Wilson Half Marathon over a year ago. I was there for Washington Running Report, interviewing runners for an article I was writing on the race. My mom came with me because I was supposed to interview Catherine Ndereba. One of the most amazing female runners ever, and my mom’s favorite runner.
I heard voice call out from the crowd. I turned but didn’t recognize any faces. It was Ashley. She reads my blog and wanted to introduce herself. I loved this. We chatted and I told her to email me because I wanted to chat more but had to run. We have emailed each other almost every single week since that race. Ashley gets me. She gets how my crazy mind dwells on stuff. She gets why I needed to say sorry to every single volunteer on Saturday because they weren’t as busy as I thought they would be. She gets why I run. She gets why I’m tired. She has been an unending supporter of my life and I only hope that I help her as much as she helps me. She is one of my biggest cheerleaders and I love her for it. This was the 2nd race that Ashley has volunteered with me at, the second where she didn’t have much else to do other than chat with me. I don’t mind that we just get to hang out at these races. She loves my kids. Enough said.
I also got to see Jennifer and her equally speedy and cute daughter, who by the way was the first little kid to cross the finish line on Saturday. I met Jennifer at the Woodrow Wilson Half last year as well. I wanted to take pictures of runners for my article and immediately was drawn to Jen when I saw she was wearing nothing but Saucony. Literally – sports bra, shorts, shoes – she was all decked out! When I chatted with her I was just draw to her friendly personality and loving demeanor. I knew I wanted to be friends with her. When I saw her Saturday I gave her a hug. It wasn’t a hug like oh I am being polite let me give you a little hug – it was a I really want to give you a GIANT hug because I care about you. She is training for Richmond this year and I have a sneaking suspicion she is going to rock it. It is people like her who inspire me. Raising a child, training, and working. She does it all and offers me awesome advice along the way. I’m truly blessed that my life path crossed her and it only happened because of running.
These are just a few of the very special ladies I have gotten to meet through running. When I say running is my life. It is. I live it. I breathe it. It is so much more to me than just getting up and going for a run. I love every aspect – from running races, to working races, to talking about training, to even little things like the twitter run chat.
When I woke up this morning and saw that I had been mentioned three times during run chat I SMILED. I smiled because it’s nice being thought of in a positive way.
Yesterday was the Chicago Marathon. I watched it LIVE on the Internet. I was crying, I was cheering, I was happy. I tweeted so much that twitter blocked me for hours – I ended up in twitter jail. Does that tell you just how much I love marathons?
Sunday I was dead tired I mean seriously tired. I ran 10 easy miles with my local running club. I promised I wouldn’t go fast to the guys I was running with. I could tell their hesitation when I said can I crash your run? As long as you don’t go any faster than 9 min pace. I said OK. Though I knew inside they would push the pace and not me.
My dad and his wife came to see Chloe and Miles and take them out for a little. I am so blessed that my dad does this every month. My kids love him and I love the break.
My little sister was in town for a bit. I wanted to see her but was so tired. My mom said I should make the effort. She was right. I headed back to Reston Town Center, where the race had been the day before, and went shopping and hung out with my beautiful little sister. We ate cupcakes, laughed, told stories and I may or may not have almost gotten in a giant fight with a woman in JCrew, who pardon my almost french was a stuck up rich snob who I had no intention of letting her talk to me or look at me in a rude manner. This made the day even more fun, my sister giggled and I am sure was thinking that I am her embarrassing older sister.
It was a GREAT weekend. Less than 6 days till I see my best friend Miss Ashley in Columbus!!! I’m itching to run, which is exactly how I should feel during the taper!!
How was your weekend? Have you made great friends through the sport of running?