For the first five miles or so the three of us ran side-by-side at a steady pace through the beautiful streets of Redlands. Now both Brian and Mary can run faster than me, but they knew I had a different goal for this race. I wasn’t running for time…my goal was to make it up all hills without walking. It was at about the 5-mile mark that we hit a huge hill. As far up as I could see runners appeared to be running straight into the horizon. I got about halfway up the hill when I just felt like I couldn’t go one step further. I told Brian to run ahead because I know he is training for a marathon in June, and he couldn’t continue to run at my pace and have a good training run. I started to slow down when Mary turned around and came back to push me forward. She would not leave my side and she continued to remind me that I could do it and that the next flatter area was just around the bend. That support pushed me forward and allowed me to continue up the hill despite what my head was telling me.
Because of that one little push, I was able to make it pretty easily to about mile 12 when once again that little voice in my head started to tell me I couldn’t go on. It was then that Mary said, “See that girl in the black (way off in the distance), we’re going to finish with her.” Once we reached that target she pointed out our next victim, “See that girl in the green, we’re going to finish with her.” This continued until we finally crossed the finish line after passing several runners in the distance. This little game which she calls picking off runners appealed to my completely competitive side, and even when I was at my lowest mentally, Mary was able to push me forward with just a little support.
This experience got me thinking about the importance of support as I make my journey from flabby to flabulous. I began to realize that much of my success is due directly to the support I have received from my family and friends. Sometimes this support comes in the form of notes of encouragement on Facebook, friends remembering to not tempt me with unhealthy food, or even honks of support as I run down the street. At other times the support is bigger like when my husband Sean and my friend Mary run with me at 5am despite the fact that neither of them is a morning person. With this kind of support I feel like I can conquer any obstacle, no matter how big it is.
As you go through your day, think about the people in your life who support you in both large and small ways, and remember to thank them for being that person in your life that moves you forward in your journey to a better you.