Five years ago, I started my journey to becoming a runner. May 3, 2010 was a Monday, and what better day of the week to start something new than a Monday? It all started because I wanted to lose some weight, and my husband said he would exercise with me if we ran rather than just walked. I had walked a lot in high school and college, and a few years earlier my husband and I had spent a summer going running around a park near our university, probably getting up to 2 miles or so. But this was five years later, and at that point, I was barely active at all. We had to start out slow.
We headed out to Independence Park in Baton Rouge, where we lived at the time, and started out on the 1.3-mile path. The first milestone was to run about a quarter of a mile. Then we could walk for the rest of the loop. Soon enough, my husband started making us run again after a half-mile walking break. I remember being very annoyed when he sprung this on me unexpectedly the first time. I ran with anger sometimes! I would get myself through by promising myself I could buy a new dress from Anthropologie when I hit a certain weight goal, and imagining my options in my head. My running endurance progressed very slowly throughout that hot summer, where I often ran in an old pair of shorts and cotton T-shirt, but by the end of August, I could run around the park three times without stopping.
In November, I ran a 5K with a friend, and I caught the racing bug. After a 5-mile race and another 5K in December, I signed up for my first half marathon and began venturing into the world of double-digit runs.
In January 2012, I ran my first marathon, something my May 2010 self would have never conceived possible.
In five years, I have run countless races, seven marathons and one 50K ultramarathon. I can’t really remember what it was like not to be running. I am so glad I started out that hot May day, barely finishing a quarter-mile and hating every second of it. I have come so far!