It’s been quite a year…I toyed with the idea of NOT writing a recap of my 2012 journey, but quickly put a cabosh on NOT doing it…for every year I try to do more, be more, and more so IMPROVE more…
I will recap this year in bits. Breaking it up between career, fitness goals, and self-preservation and growth.
I started a new career in the fall of 2011, just a few months after my retirement from the Air Force. I still feel like a fish out of water some days, but other days I find myself learning just something small that makes me feel as if I am on top of the world. The civilian hospital setting is so different from military. But with perseverance I will prevail and succeed. Some days I may want to give up, but I won’t let myself.
I completed my MBA in March of 2012…something I though NEVER possible.
I was offered a position this year as an Adjunct Professor, teaching Histology, just last month. What is Histology most people ask? Simply stated it is the branch of anatomy that studies biological tissues. It is a truly artistic yet scientific field that can never be totally automated…I have been in this field for 21 ½ years now, and still find myself learning something new every day. I look forward to this new challenge, as I know not only will it benefit me in more ways than one; it also provides me an avenue to give back to the community.
I started the year fresh and filled with fitness goals. My 40th birthday would be in 2013, so finishing my first FULL marathon was looming on the horizon. I started slow and steady with treadmill runs, building my way up to my second half marathon. The Schaumburg ½ in May 2012. It was one of the toughest races I’ve had to date…It hurt, I sucked, and I wanted to give up. But…I don’t give up, and we (my sister and I) finished around the 2:33 mark. Blah. I got home, and feverishly looked for another ½ so I could redeem myself in order to regain confidence for FULL marathon training. And yes…The All State 13.1 in Chicago truly was my redemption, finishing strong at 2:11, my current PR.
I also ran a few other smaller races and had a blast doing them all.
Dash in the Dark 5K-with a PR of 28:10
Fox Valley 20 miler-Best. Race. Ever. 3:39 finish.
Dick Pond Hot Cocoa-um, forgot my time? Yikes! What kind of runner am I?
Chicago Hot Chocolate 15K finished in 1:44
Turkey Trot 4 miler finished in 40:57
But biggest of all, I RAN THE CHICAGO MARATHON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Lol…And my finishing time was 5:23. THIS, was the hardest race of my life, quite possibly one of the hardest moments/days of my life. I felt every emotion known to man…joy, elation, stress, worry, and nearly defeat when my knee gave out with still nearly 8 miles to run. Thanks to my amazing sister for keeping me going!
It looks like I will not only finish out the year at 650 miles, but with more memories than I could possibly imagine. I’ve now signed up for the Egg Shuffle ½ marathon in March, and hope to have more races on my schedule soon.
SELF-PRESERVATION AND GROWTH
I have been on depression medication for more than ½ my life. I can proudly say I am now going over a month strong, medication FREE.
I have learned that not everyone will be truly happy for your success. But be, happy, anyway.
I have learned that some people want nothing more than for you to fail. Succeed, anyway.
I have learned that even when you doubt yourself, your “people” will pick you up and show you that you CAN. DO. IT.
I have learned you can’t GET support, without GIVING it in return. Show those you love how much they mean to you, always.
I have learned that the friends I have made through my running community truly are amazing, and in turn they have changed my life for the better. They get my butt out of bed. They motivate me, and they inspire me to be a better person.
I have learned that even in the darkest of hours, I can always find joy. For in the end, my joy in self-created.
Bring on 2013, I can’t wait for new adventures!