The race was quite emotional for me on so many levels. I went from a girl who loathed and struggled running a mile as a kid to coasting through 13.1 miles (with the exception of miles 10 and 11... those were tough). As I hit the pavement across different spots in Dallas, it really hit me that this is my home now, and I found a renewed appreciation for the Big D. The support of my friends and family, spectators on the course handing out high fives, and encouraging signs (my favorite was a picture of Ryan Gosling, "Hey Girl, I'm waiting for you at the finish line.") all made me feel like a running rockstar, despite my 7,000th-ish place finish. I truly discovered that running for me is indeed mind over matter, and I'm incredibly thankful that I'm physically able to go the distance.
Most importantly, I owe so much to my husband for being so encouraging since I made this a goal a few months ago. He ran with me at my speed until I got to the point where I could run several miles without huffing and puffing, held me accountable to my training program, and is always my biggest cheerleader. He has run several half marathons before but he ran his first full marathon yesterday and I'm so proud of him! I can hardly believe that he doubled my distance. That's a lot of miles, people.
I'm excited to take a few weeks off but there's no doubt I'll be hitting the ground running after the holidays. I'm looking forward to improving on my speed and running another half this spring. In the meantime, I'll be keeping up my new friend Ali of Miles With Style for running tips and support. If you're interested in running, you should definitely track this gal. She's super sweet and truly a wealth of running knowledge.
That's a wrap on races for 2012!