A couple years ago my friend Julie-Ann ran the Disney Princess Half Marathon at Walt Disney World and posted pictures on Facebook.
And I thought the pictures looked fun and told her so.
And then I said, “The next time you do it, I want to do it too.”
I have no idea why I said that.
I’ve never been a runner.
So when she came to me 6 months ago and said she’d be running it again and that I should do it too, I hesitated.
But she truly convinced me that I could do it.
And then I said okay.
I started using the “Couch to Half Marathon” plan I found online — you know, since I’d never run before.
And the training started one of the craziest things I’ve ever done.
And by crazy, I mean smart.
To train for this, I had to run on our treadmill 4 times a week.
Four times a week, my husband and the kids stayed upstairs, while I ran on the treadmill and watched Netflix.
In the beginning, the break was really fun.
And then I started being able to finish miles that I never thought I’d do.
And then I really dreaded my “long run” days (Wednesdays and Saturdays) but immediately felt like I could rule the world when I completed them.
And I started saying things to my husband like, “Don’t worry, I only have to run three miles tonight.”
You guys! Three miles became easy! For me!
And then I started becoming really, really scared about running the actual race because…I’d never run a race before.
I’ve never done a 5K.
I’ve never done a 10K.
I believe my previous race experience involved an egg on a spoon and handing it off to someone…
So, I was scared.
I was scared I’d get hurt and be unable to finish.
And I really, really, REALLY didn’t want to not finish.
My husband — who really is the best — had spent hours and hours handling household chores and dinners so I could train for this.
My kids were expecting to see a medal!
And *I* had worked really hard for this goal — which I was proud of in and of itself.
I got so scared that I kept thinking and saying, “I just want to get this over with!”
And you know what?
I totally did it!
I loved everything about it.
I loved the marching bands, the DJs, the “Frozen” music, the gospel choir, the Army soldier man, and the crowds of people cheering us on with signs!
I loved running through the Magic Kingdom, and Cinderella’s castle and Epcot.
I loved that people honked in support of us as they drove by.
I loved all of the people running and all of their super cool outfits.
Halfway through the race I was thinking things like, “I can’t wait to do this again next year!”
For real, you guys.
It was amazing.
I think I smiled the whole way.
I’m not kidding!
When I crossed that finished line, it was almost like a blur.
So surreal to me!
And then I posted this picture on my Facebook with the caption, “I did it!!”
And all of my friends said the sweetest things!
It felt like winning!
(And I was so close to winning! Only 2 hours behind the actual winner. Ha!)
It was an amazing experience.
And I really hope to do it again someday.
Let’s pretend I won and this is the Oscars…
I’d like to thank Julie-Ann, Melissa and Amanda for running with me and including me on their family girls trip. They are amazing and I love them. I’d like thank my husband for his constant and unconditional support in every way. I’m lucky. I’d like to thank my in-laws for watching after my family while I was gone. Sounds like they had a blast. I’d like to thank my children for being so very awesome, for being amazed at my medal, and for telling me for days how much they missed me. I’d like to thank my parents and sister and brother-in-law for their sweet phone calls and encouragement. And to my very best friends who told me all along I could do it. LOVE you all.