Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Signs and Celebrations

I've written before about my amazing group of running friends.  I cannot even describe how much they bless my life. One thing I love about our group is how we support each other.  If someone is going through a rough time, the prayers and encouragement are unending.  If someone has something to celebrate, it is like having our own personal fan club.  From babies to marriages to injuries and triumphs, we are there through it all.  The funny thing is, most of us only see each other in the wee early morning hours of each day when we are running.  It is comical when we run in to each other at the grocery store or bagel shop and are shocked to see each other so fixed up.  It is almost like, "Wow, I had no idea you looked like that!" 

Being that running is the first thing that brought us all together, we share in each others goals, training plans, worries and triumphs when it comes to racing.  We know each others PRs.  We know each others upcoming races.  We know about each others training and the challenges faced along the way.  And I know for me, I get invested.  So as one of my girls approach their first half-marathon, or a hopeful PR marathon, I am excited and nervous and hopeful and sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for news.  I'm pretty sure I can safely say I'm not the only one who feels this way.

We all got to experience this recently with our friend, Katie.  Katie is one of our fastest runners and she is so inspiring for all of us.  She's super talented, but I'm not sure she really sees it and that is probably one of the many reasons we like her so much.  Anyway, Katie has been training HARD for the Chicago marathon.  In fact, this was the first time she'd done a lot of what she did in training.  It wasn't always fun.  It was super challenging.  And because she'd never done much of it, she was not quite sure if she was doing it right, if she was doing all she could, or if it would result in a PR marathon.  Her goal was a 3:15.  Her best was a 3:18.

Now, I felt the whole time that she had it in the bag.  Not only is she already a strong and amazing runner, her training was hard core and she stuck with it the entire time.  Still, there is always room for something beyond one's control to happen in a marathon.  I have experienced it and seen it happen in others.  And it is heartbreaking.  Katie knows this too, and so as the marathon approached and she began to question and doubt and wonder and talk herself out of being disappointed if it didn't happen, the girls and I were right there with her. 

On race day the e-mails were flying.  We were on our computers before and after church services, and I wondered how she was doing the whole morning.  And then I saw it.  The e-mail titled, "KATIE ROCKS!"  I almost stood up and cheered.  I said, "SHE DID IT!  SHE DID IT!" as Jason asked who did what.  The e-mails continued to fly as each of us discovered the news.  I'm sure Katie's phone and facebook page began to light up with congratulations and comments as her friends and family realized she had achieved her PR.

But I like to think her morning running crew were the ones who really knew, who really understood.

Anyway, Katie is back in town now and took a few moments to post quickly on her blog that she had in fact reached her goal and that she'd tell more soon (for which I am impatiently waiting).  In her post she mentions a sign she read while running, and I found it so inspiring.

"There will come a day when you will not be able to do this.  Today is not that day!"

Katie didn't have time to write much, but she did say she thought about these words for much of the race.  I can understand why.  These words are simple, but so powerful too!  I absolutely love this and intend to use it as inspiration for my next event as well.

So today, this post is dedicated to Katie, my amazing marathoning and mothering friend.  Check out her blog for an update on her marathon.  I know that's what I'll be doing...or I might just show up at her house with 2 cups of coffee if I can't wait any longer for the scoop.


  1. Ackkk! This post just made my day. And it made my day knowing that my running friends were "with me" race day too. It is all thanks to you that I am in this group and that I now call these girls my friends. YOUR help (coming along on tempo, track, and long runs, giving running advice, lending an ear for me to talk about my training) meant SO much to me for this race, Jane. Thanks for believing in me even when I didn't!

  2. That's awesome! It sounds like you have a great running group of friends/support system.
    And I love that quote- I've used it myself to psych myself up ( :

  3. Wow, way to go Katie! Can't wait to read about her marathon! It's so special to have friendships like that. I've had some of my best conversations running with friends (including you :) )!

  4. I've been following Katie's training and I'm soo happy for her! Soo AWESOME!!

    I'm so thankful for my "running friends" that I've met this year! We all understand how hard it is to do what we do. Support and encouragement are two tools that are essential to our training! Looking forward to Katie' recap!! :)

    Pam (pamula2000@aol.com)

  5. Thank you for one more thing---for knowing and appreciating the hard work that went into the 2.5 minute time difference between my past PR and this new one. That is another reason why I love our group. We are all runners and we know how hard it is to shave time off of your best time. It seems like so little, but it was very hard for me! Thanks for understanding that!