Thursday, December 20, 2012

2012 in Review

As I will be leaving for the Midwest super early in the morning so that I can spend Christmas at home with family, this will likely be my last post of 2012. I have had so many new, great, strange, and funny experiences in my endeavor to be an active person this year, and I have chronicled them here on my blog for everyone's enjoyment. I have been very sick, so my activity has declined recently, so I thought I would take the time to do some reminiscing and post my favorite memories, books, and supporters of 2012.

Year at a Glance

1) "Anything For 10: The background story," is the first thing I ever posted on my blog, and it is a synopsis of why I started running, and a recap of my first half marathon experience.

2) "It's been a long week," is one of those posts/weeks that pops into my head randomly, and I can't help but start laughing every time it does. It really is ridiculous that all these things actually happened to me.

3) "Running Mates," is one of my very favorite stories from this year because it has been a big year for me. I got engaged and moved across the country with my favorite person, and we even ran another race together despite the craziness that is described in this post.

4) "Big Wheel," is a great because this year I branched out to expand my fitness horizons, and it was an interesting year of experiences indeed. My introduction to spin class is just one of my new experiences.

5) "Keep the Connection," is one of those posts that I read over and over again. I have had so many personal growth experiences throughout 2012, and this is one of the concepts that I plan to bring with me to the new year.

Thanks to Supporters

I am so thankful to my brother Joe and his wife Katie. They are two of the people who will talk to me and let me talk to them endlessly about running. There have even been months this year when I called my brother on a daily basis for running advice or complaints.

My fiance, Matthew, although he doesn't always want to hear about my running, has been drug to races this year with me, and he puts up with me on a daily basis. He has even reluctantly taken pictures of me at races and whatnot so that I could put them here on my blog. He also allowed me to put my bibs and medals up on my closet despite my saying repeatedly that our apartment is not a dorm room.

The regular readers of my blog are amazing. I get messages of encouragement from friends and readers often, which is one of the things that helps me to keep moving forward in meeting my goals. I hope that you too can benefit from my experiences and encouragement.

And I wouldn't be writing this blog at all if is wasn't for my Anything For 10 Sister, Grace. She is awesome. She is always telling me that I can do anything I really put my mind to, and she has been an amazing support to me even when she was halfway around the world. I am so glad she challenged my family to start running.

Favorite Running Book of 2012

Now my favorite book of 2012 isn't a book that was published in 2012, but it is a book that I have read in 2012 that has been inspiring to me. I recently read Mile Markers by Kristin Armstrong, and I must say that I plan on buying it so that I can read it over and over. It is a running book geared at women, sorry gentlemen, and I am so motivated by her stories and insights. It is a must read for any women who run, not just marathoners.

Friday, December 14, 2012

You can bet against me if you want, but I'm Helen's granddaughter, so I wouldn't.

I haven't posted anything in almost a month, but it's not because I haven't been busy. In fact, I have been extremely busy in the past month. So I will give you a short rundown (pun intended), and then I will let you in on the big scoop.


I shared in a post in August entitled Let's Get Real. In that post, I divulged the bulge. I admitted that since moving to Philly, I had gained quite a bit of weight, and that I intended to lose that weight. I have lost weight over time, but I am still not where I'd like to be. In September, I wrote the following in a post.

As I have mentioned before, my grandma has recently lost the ability to walk. She has, for my entire life, been the pentacle of independence, courage, strength, and  grace. My grandma has lived her life with a strong yet graceful dignity that I admire, and I know that I should always utilize the abilities I have because I could lose them at any time. I do value my ability to walk, run, and be active, so I know that I should take full advantage of those things.

I am oddly both happy and sad to say that my Grandma is no longer an ALS patient. She passed away last week, but I know now that she is no longer in pain, and I know that she is in Heaven. More and more I thought about the promise that I made to myself right after I finished my first half marathon. I vowed to myself that I would run 26.2 before I turned 26. After seeing my grandma lose her mobility, I started thinking about a charity or organization that I could raise money for that would help people regain their mobility. And after she passed away on my 25th birthday, I knew that I wanted to run it in her memory.

The Scoop

Was my grandma a running junkie who would be pumped that her granddaughter has officially signed up for her first, and likely only, marathon endeavor? No, but my grandma believed in me with a pride and confidence that most people, including myself, often do not. If you've read the Anything For 10 Background Story, then you know that I kind of only dedicated to running my first half because most of my family said I couldn't do it. I am honestly let down and annoyed beyond words that once again my family has denied me the support that I wanted in this journey. 

My Anything For 10 Sister is standing behind me, and she will be running beside, or likely ahead of, me on race day for the 2013 Williams Route 66 Marathon. I'm not sure if the rest of my family is trying to be clever in attempting to push me to prove them wrong again, or if they just really don't believe in my strength, but I am Helen's granddaughter, and I have had the best example of strength and courage that any person could have, so I will run this marathon in her memory despite them. I am officially registered, and I am already beginning the mental preparations because I know in this journey that I will have a lot more to deal with than my family telling me that I can't do it.

In the coming of the new year, I will be posting more about the organization I have chosen to raise funds to help, and how you can support the cause and my first marathon attempt. I also encourage you to take advantage of whatever mobility you may have. You never know what you've got till it's gone.