Many years ago my mom got me into running. As she likes to remind me I wasn’t that keen on it, in fact I cried… for 9 kilometers of a 10 km race. I was diagnosed with asthma at a very young age and running long distances seemed to make things worse. Somehow though I decided to keep running, mostly because of the fun I saw others having and the fact there was travel opportunities. Now I have run many 5 and 10 k races, several half marathons including one in Nicaragua and 2 marathons – one in China and one in San Diego.
I never thought I would run a marathon in Calgary. Even further off my list was an ultra – because those people are just nuts for running that far! However this year for the 50th Anniversary of the Calgary Marathon they offered a 50 km option. And I got tricked into signing up.
My training wasn’t as strong as for last year’s marathon but I was hoping just to complete it in the cut off time. Ideally I wanted a bit faster – 6 hours didn’t seem too bad to run that far. Race day came and I was nervous – this was farther than I had run ever, and 20 k farther than I had run this year. My legs were a bit tight the week before, but I had rolled, stretched, gone for massage and ART. I had also had a few IV treatments just make sure my muscles had the best they could get.
The weather was beautiful! Sunshine and blue skies, no one could ask for better. And there were tons of smiling faces cheering us on, including some great colleagues with amazing signs and friends and family posted in the spots that I needed most (4 loops on Memorial Trail…). The last 7 k was when things were a bit of a push but I things got better when I found my mom near her finish for the marathon. I finished the race with a smile on my face in 5 hours and 49 minutes – 11 minutes under my goal time. I even had a personal best at the 42.2 k mark.
The day ended with a post-race gathering that included our local running friends and support, as well as some friends we had met at our race in China who came in from the US and Trinidad. I really need to thank my mom for getting me into this crazy sport – through it I have challenged myself physically in ways I never thought I could, been able to travel to amazing places and most importantly get to meet incredible people who inspire me. What inspires you to do things you never thought were possible?
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