About a year and a half ago, I started running. Wasn't a huge fan, but I needed to add exercise to my life and this seemed like something I could do. Over time, I really learned to love how I felt during and after running. So, I kept it up and started adding to my 2 mile morning routine. By last Fall I was ready for a big challenge and set my sights on a half marathon. I procrastinated with the training and decided to do a Half Relay last spring with my running buddy, Elizabeth. Neal joined in with his friend and we both had a great time. We decided right after that to schedule a 1/2 for the fall when the weather was nice. We picked out the Rock n Roll in San Antonio and Neal invited several of our friends to start training, too. I was confident this wouldn't be too tough because I was already trained to run about 8 miles and had tons of time to work up to 13.1. Soon, I realized that the relay had brought on a terrible case of shin splints that had me out of running pretty much the whole summer. Then, as I jumped back into it in the fall, I quickly hurt my back, setting me back a few more weeks. There were several times that I thought I should just forget it, but Neal encouraged me to stick it out! Then came 2 weeks before and Neal gets sick. Really sick. He just took time off for a bit, but by even just a couple days before, he was still coughing terribly and not feeling up for much walking, let alone running 13.1 miles! He went to the doctor who diagnosed him with Bronchitis, gave him a shot and a laugh as he wished him luck running that sick! But we were both undeterred!
We headed down to San Antonio Friday night and got to spend the night with Josh, Liz, and Baby Samuel. Ryan and Kristi were there that night, too, then the next day, Mike, Val and Tyler joined us. We all ate together, relaxed while watching football, and got ready for the next morning! Neal and I started together but quickly got separated. He said it was pretty tough since he hadn't been running much and since he was still recovering, but he finished and was still breathing!
I had set a realistic goal for myself based on my injuries and was thrilled that I was able to come in just below my goal! And really, we were both just thrilled to cross the finish line!
So glad we got to do this together and combine it with a fun weekend with friends...there is even talk of "next year!"