Today is my husbands 30th birthday.  I figured it was a nice gesture to let him sleep in rather than getting up super early so I can go run [if sleeping in is even possible with three kids under 5 in the house?]. 

This meant I needed to do my long run of 14 miles Friday. I’d like to say that my morning began differently than most, but it didn’t.  My son, not my newborn baby, but my 2 1/2 year old got up at 4 am for no particular reason[something he has been doing often lately].  He wouldn’t go back to bed and I didn’t want to get up.  Shortly after that my other son, the baby, woke up and was fussing.  Finally at 5:30 am I gave up and got up to start the day.

Eric had the day off, but wanted me to help get Chloe on the bus before I headed out the door.  The longer I was at home the faster I lost my motivation/desire to head out the door for my run.  I knew however that if I did not get the run done Friday that I wouldn’t get it done at all over the weekend.

TIP: Be realistic with yourself – aware of your personality. If you know putting off a run means that it will turn into a missed run.  Head out the door and get it done first thing.

Charlie’s mommy texted me around nine saying that she hoped my run had gone well.  Ahhhh I had to admit to her that I hadn’t gone yet and was searching for motivation.  Could you send me some please? She did just that by reminding me that EVERYTHING happens for a reason.  What was that reason I asked myself?

I looked out the window and my street was still covered with a light dusting of snow and appeared slippery.  I didn’t want to run outside, much less run 14 miles outside, alone.  Treadmill it would be.  Could I even run that far on the treadmill at this point?  Last winter I had to do some of my 20 milers on the treadmill and those were the hardest runs of my life. Harder than most of the marathons I have completed.

I grabbed the January/February issue of Washington Running Report and sat down to try and find some motivation to get on the treadmill.  I read the Editor’s Note first.  It talked about all the changes that have been happening in the magazine. There was a new section for the last page and it happened to feature Mike Broderick

I only had the privilege of meeting Mike once. He was my teacher at the Road Runners Club of American coaching class I took.  He was one of those people that you meet and you feel a sense of peace when around them.  He was a bright shinning light and was someone who I could tell was liked by many. 

Sadly Mike passed away this past November from lung cancer.  I remember feeling saddened by the news, and also puzzled that I felt that way about a man I had only had contact with on three days of my life.  My last memory of him was on Haines Point during the Marine Corps Marathon.  He was running the opposite direction as me, on the sidelines, cheering people on.

The page in the magazine was about Timeless Lessons from him, of which there were five.  The first is the one that struck home.  [everything happens for a reason indeed]


WIN stands for “What do I Need?” and it means “What do I need right now to help get me though this workout or race.” Do I need to hydrate or take in extra nutrition? Do I need to slow down, or walk for a bit to get my heart rate down? Do I need to focus or replace negative thoughts with positive ones? This will help you focus on the moment instead of what is to come – you are in control of your race or workout.

I needed to replace my negative thoughts of I can’t possibly do 14 miles alone on the treadmill with I can do this and I will do this and I will enjoy this.

I got on the ‘mill.
I’d like to say those first miles were bliss.  They weren’t. I questioned whether I should just stop at 4 and try again on Sunday.  I talked myself out of it by saying I only had 10 more to go and if I waited till Sunday I would have 14 to go. 

Somewhere around the 7 mile mark I started to feel it.  Endorphins.  I am an endorphin addict.  Running is my drug of choice.

What I need?

I need to run 14 miles.

I need a good treadmill run.

I need to be more positive.
I need to be thankful I can run.

I need to focus on my strengths and not my weakness’s.

I got lost in the music.

Kevin Rudolf Let it Rock –
Because when I arrive I-I’ll bring the fire

Make you come alive I can take you higher
What this is forgot? I must now remind you
Let it rock let it rock let it rock

T.I. Paper Trail – What you need to do is be thankful for the life you got, you know what I’m sayin, stop looking at what you ain’t got and start being thankful for what you do got.
Insert image – *me fist pumping in the air* Insert thoughts *my life IS great – I’m going to be thankful – so thankful for this amazing life I have been blessed with – I have legs – I have lungs – I can run – run – run – run – I will run – I will be thankful – you got this Dorothy – you can run 14 miles – nothing can stop you – not one baby – not two babies – not three babies – you can bring the fire*
Insert image – *tears – heavy breathless breathing – raw emotion*
WIN – What I needed today? An attitude adjustment.  Today I ran.  I ran for Mike.  I run for those who can’t run.  I run because it is truly a gift from God.  I am not an Olympian.  I am not the fastest girl on the block.  I’m not a pro.  But I have been blessed.  Blessed with the gift of running and I will use it to the best of my ability for good.  Good in my life.  Good in the lives of others.
Thank you Mike for a great run and the attitude adjustment.  I will remember WIN for the rest of my life. 

Tip: Harness your emotions.  Use them as fuel to the fire.  Take all the negative in your life and use it for positive.  Make it work for you – let it help you run farther, faster than you thought possible.  Break through the barriers and push when you don’t think anything is left.

Mile 14 – 7:35

I was tired and wasn’t sure if I could complete 14 miles.  I used my emotions.  You got this Dorothy.  You can run fast for one mile.  You can do anything for one mile.  You MUST run fast today – it’s a gift.

When my run was over I went downstairs and got a Light Chocolate Muscle Milk to drink.  What was the expiration date? 11/11/11 – Coincidence? I think not.


  1. Shellyrm ~ just a country runner says:

    Great post. On a day that has been one of the most challenging of my life, your positive message helps remind me that difficult things make me stronger.

  2. Lesley @ says:

    Odd timing… I didn't know who he was until today. I have RRCA cert class this weekend and his coaching partner, Janet, is teaching. She's amazing.

    I love the WIN philosophy.

  3. Terrific post! Thank you for the pearls of wisdom…

  4. Let It Rock is a GREAT running song. :) Good job!

  5. Oh wow- great blog! Glad you found the motivation you needed. And it's obvious that those treadmill runs are really effective, per your marathon last spring! I love that 11-11 date. :-)

  6. I didn't know about Mike's illness or that he passed away and was so sad to read that today. But your message and the reminder of him was really wonderful to read this morning. Thank you. Mike was so inspiring and encouraging and I will never forget the impact he made on my life in such a short time.
    As always, your posts are so thoughtful! I am getting on my mill this morning at 38+ weeks pregnant and you have given me a LOT to think about today :o) LOVE YOU.

  7. Great Post! I knew you'd find your motivation. I love the WIN Lesson, thanks for sharing, I missed the article about Mike in WRR.

  8. Jim ... 50after40 says:

    I love this post – VERY inspirational. Great run too!

  9. I don't run with music often, but that song is often in the mix. Congrats on a great run!

  10. Jessica Benney says:

    Dorothy, thank you for this post. I don't know whether you remember me-I was an intern for the National Marathon and we roomed together the night before the race! Now I am the membership coordinator for the RRCA. I worked with Mike for several months, corresponding with him through email and over the phone, but I never got to meet him. Nevertheless I can see what an amazing inspiration he has been to all those who had the chance to meet and work with him.

    I hope everything is well with you and our paths cross again in the running community!

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