Last Sunday I completed my 8th half marathon! It was an amazing day for so many reasons. For starters, it was amazing that I actually made it to the start line. I woke up at 4:15am (after 4 hours of sleep) and just didn't feel like going. I was tired and wasn't looking forward to the hilly 13.1 mile run. The only reason I actually laced up and did it was for Meagan. She is a daughter, a sister, a friend, loving wife & mother of two who is battling colon cancer. She was diagnosed January 22 just weeks after giving birthday to her 2nd perfect bundle of joy. She has a fantastic attitude, amazing support from friends and family and is kicking cancers ass!
I chose to wear my new Embrace the hill shirt on Sunday because I felt it was so fitting for this Hilly course! I'd go into detail about the shirt, but that would make this post very long and you would stop reading so instead, -----> Click here to find out more about the creator of the shirt, Sarah.
As I was about to walk out the door and head to the race, I tried one more time to talk myself out of going. I wanted to go back to bed - well guess what self, so does Meagan but she doesn't. She gets up for that cutie pictured above and her newborn son. She gets up everyday and puts one foot in front of the other for her wonderful husband Matt. She gets up after having chemo and takes care of her family and herself because she is an amazing, strong, beautiful woman who will not let Cancer keep her down.
6:00am I get to the start line and get that runners high. Happy I pushed myself. Here we go, 6:15am start ... just embrace the hill. Less than half a mile into this run we came to our first hill. Embrace the Hill! I made an agreement with myself that I would not walk up a hill. If I needed to, I could walk when I got to the top. I made myself fight it. Lean into it, get up and over. Life isn't easy. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger and that's how I looked at these hills. They make me more powerful as a runner. They make me earn beautiful views like this! It was amazing, the picture does it no justice AT ALL. (the course took us over Golden Gate Bridge, we turned around and ran back --- amazing!)
This was a tough race. However for the first time in my half marathon career -- I ran 100% of the time!! All 13.1 freaken miles!!! I shuffled through the water stations but I did not stop moving. I did not walk.
Thank you Meagan for sharing your story with me. You got me out of bed on Sunday. You got me through each and every step of this hilly race. You gave me the motivation and inspiration to push myself when I thought I couldn't. For that, I am thankful! I wish I had more photos to share as this was a beautiful course. I chose to enjoy it and keep pushing rather than stop and document the moment.
I crossed the finish line at 2 hours and 12 minutes with the biggest smile (and lots of tears).
Embrace the Hill .... always. Lean into it. You are a better person after you are up and over it. <3 <3