Monday, December 6, 2010

A Happy Ending!

Sunday was Marathon #2 for me and I couldn't have asked for a better way to end this year's running season. I know I'm giving away "the end" at the beginning but I'm just still so overjoyed about how Sunday unfolded I can't contain myself.

I am having a hard time even describing how I feel...giddy, happy, elated, proud, accomplished...those are some words that come to mind. As you know from the previous post I tried to go into Sunday with an open mind. I wanted to be relaxed and I wanted to enjoy this race. Something that I really struggled with in DC during my first marathon. I knew that much of how the day would go was beyond by control.

Have I mentioned it was freezing? I think that is my biggest complaint about was bitterly cold. We arrived at Fair Park about 6:40am. We got to spend some time inside the automative building which was nice, but then headed outside. We huddled in our corral for at least 45 minutes waiting to start - Robin, Kim, Melissa, Serene and myself. It was nice to be surrounded by friends. Happiness! I felt great and I wasn't nervous...I was ready!

The first couple miles were a little hard mainly because of the cold. My feet felt like ice cubes and as they hit the ground there was a bit of a sting until the blood started flowing and my legs warmed up. At mile 5 my family was there cheering. Happiness! I stopped for a quick minute and lost sight of Robin. So as I started back on hit me that I might be running the next 21 miles alone. I became a bit concerned...did I have it in me? Self-doubt as I've said before is my biggest weakness. I stayed focused and about 1/2 mile down the road I saw my coaches...first David and then Meg. David asked how I was and I said..."I'm great...I don't even care how today goes so I'm good!" Meg ran with me a bit and said Robin wasn't that far ahead so I thought just maybe I could catch up with her. At around mile 6.5 someone tapped me on the back...and to my surprise it was Robin. Happiness! She accidently passed the relay stop to pass off to Ken so she had to double-back.

We ran together, mostly in silence...but at a consistent pace. I was content and comfortable. Will & Ken were waiting for us at Mile 16 for food support. We gobbled some cheerios and pretzles and were on our way. Happiness! We continued to run together until mile 23, I think. My knee started to ache and I could feel I was getting a bit tired so I stopped to walk an incline. But as Robin went out of sight I knew I had this...I knew that Will was at the finish along with my Mom, Andrew and Allie.

My final GU was at mile 24 and I hoped that would give me the last bit of energy I needed for the final push to the finish. Right before mile 25 I saw a purple jersey in the middle of the road...could it be? I yelled out as loud as I could, "ROBIN" and the purple jersey turned around. Happiness! Tears of joy rolled down my face and all I could say was "I'm so happy to see you!" It wasn't that I couldn't finish by myself, but Robin has been my main running partner this entire year. 90% of our long runs and races we have done together this year and knowing that we might just cross the finish line together...well what more could I say.

We both had some pain in that final stretch. Charlene, another TNT coach, was covering that last mile and she ran with us for about 1/2 a mile and chatted...trying to keep our mind off anything but finishing. She left us right as we would round the corner to see the finish line. We hit the corner and that was it...we finished strong. The final 1.2 mile was my fastest all day! Happiness!

We headed back to the TNT tent to check in and meet up with Will, Ken and the rest of my family. Much of the team was there...Allie, Jessica, Serene, Melissa, Brittni, Chris and many others. What was even more amazing is that it seemed EVERYONE had an amazing race day. Santa (via God) had answered my list. Happiness!

So why am I so happy? First off, I shaved 22 minutes off my marathon time from final time was 5:11:11. Secondly, and even more important than my time, was my attitude during this race. Maybe it was that White Rock was my official TNT event...maybe it was simply because I knew what to expect this time or maybe it was just that I decided to let whatever Whatever it was it worked!

The last year (really 18 months) have brought me so much happiness in more ways than I can ever express. John Bingham said, "The miracle isn't that I finished. It's that I had the courage to start." and I couldn't agree more! the beginning of this year I blogged that I would complete 10 events in 2010. And it looks as if I did...if you are so inclined, please take a couple minutes and watch the video of events I put together. It pretty much sums up my year and how I feel about running and TEAM IN TRAINING.

10 in 2010
2 - 5k events
2 - 10k events
4 - Half Marathons
2 - Full Marathons

Wishing everyone a very safe and happy holiday season! Until next year...

A couple of additions...

Since I posted this blog I tallied up how much Will, Allie and I raised for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society from White Rock '09 to White Rock '10...drum roll....$7,557.60! And I have to add that the three awesome friends I recruited for this season (Robin, Kim & Shannon)...they raised...$4734.00! So all in all that is $12,291.60!

Thank you to EVERYONE who donated. You have truly made a difference!

Please check out the following two blogs about Sunday's race and TNT...they will continue to inspire you to join us - Robin's and Jessica's.

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  1. Great post Dianna! You have been inspired and have been the one to inspire so many others around you. I am proud to have had the chance to train with you this season and look forward to watching you as you continue your journey!!!

  2. Congratulations, Dianna! Not just for White Rock but for an amazing year! What an accomplishment - you should be very proud of yourself. Many people "talk the talk," but you have literally "walked the walk," and we thank you so much for raising awareness, funds, and hope with the Peachy Keens!

    Enjoy your holidays, and we can't wait to see what y'all do next!

    The Moores

  3. Love love love this post!! It may be one of my favorites (and yes, I know I say that every time)! This has been such an amazing season. I am so very thankful we met! Seriously, what an great way to end the year!! Although, I am kind of in state of depression now that it's over.

    (I'm going to put a link to this post on my blog. Hope it's OK)

  4. Congrats Di! Very inspiring! What an awesome year for you guys. Way to go!!

  5. Dianna,
    You are truly an inspriation. Just reading what you have to say makes me think of things that i could do to make a difference.
    I love you more than you'll ever imagine.
    love, mom