IMG_2046Seven years ago I completed the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco, CA.  To date, it is still one of the most difficult things I have ever done and the only thing in my life that has been more physically painful has been the labor and delivery of my two children.

But, despite the pain, it was such a great accomplishment and I am glad I did it.  As a matter of fact, I have a Tiffany’s necklace I received when I crossed the finish line and I still wear it regularly (I have it on right now).  Something about that necklace makes me feel empowered.  Whenever I feel like the world is handing me way too much, I dig in my jewelry box for that necklace.  It gives me strength.

Today, seven years, two kids, and thirty pounds later, I decided to give running a shot again and I completed the Baltimore Women’s Classic with my younger cousin, Jennifer.  It was just 5k, but a lot has happened in seven years so it was quite challenging.  I hate to say this but I totally skipped my last week of training and spent the week exhausted and full of sugar.  I also had a charlie horse one night that did a number on my left calf muscle, and I just had one of those weeks where I felt like life was beating me up.

To be honest, I even felt like crap yesterday (the day before the race) and I really didn’t want to to do it anymore.  I felt like after skipping a week of training and eating crap, I would have to walk the whole thing and I’d be lucky to finish the race in 45 minutes.  Well, there is nothing like a partner to motivate you, which is exactly what Jen did for me.  Since I was the one that convinced her to sign up, I was obligated to do this — no matter how crappy I felt.

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I can’t even tell you how good it felt to cross the finish line.  And not only did I cross, but I completed the race in 34:47.  Pretty good for someone who thought they would have to walk.  I ran across that finish line with pride.  We got our medals, our roses, our cold wet towels, and a few cold slices of watermelon to cool us down in the heat.  We felt like we were on top of the world.

Jen and I have made a pact to keep the momentum going, so we are doing the Shape Diva Dash together in September.  Another 5k, but this time with obstacles, promising to be a pretty cool event. We can’t wait!  Who knew these two Brooklyn girls who didn’t even like to run for the bus would end up getting high off of races.  It’s crazy.

I have to say that completing this race definitely has me feeling like I truly can put in the work to get back into shape.  I know that I could be better than I currently I am.  So much better.

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Thank you, Jennifer, for rockin’ with me and making this morning pretty awesome.  Thank you BWC, for making this morning’s race a great experience for us.  Thank you, my wonderful son, for telling me how proud you are of mommy and giving me one of your toy medals and calling me a winner, and thank you, to my husband, daughter, friends, and everyone who supported me over the last few weeks.

I see a loftof 5k’s in my future, and I definitely think Jen and I will be at the BWC next year.

I might be 7 years older, 30 pounds heavier, and a whole lot busier thanks to my kids, but I will tell you what… I’ve still got it.  34, fly, and on a mission to reach my potential in every possible way.  Nothing like finishing a race with a bunch of women to make you feel like you are on fire!