All of these people have a story and all are inspiring on their own. The two charity runners are older men, one is close to 60 and the other 74, both inspire me with their ability to continue to get out there and run. Jim at 60, seems to run every race with a smile on his face and is a great guy, Bob at 74 is from my town and also trains for triathlons. At 74 he trained to compete in Ironman Key West, but the race was downgraded to a 70.3 due to some issue, otherwise, he would be an Ironman. I hope to be able to do half of what they are doing when I get to that point in my life.
Bob with his BAA medal
Sara and Gary are inspiring in a way that I am in awe of their abilities. Gary, as you may remember, ran 500 miles in 10 days for the Wounded Warrior Project just before the Superbowl. He's ran in 21 Boston Marathons (consecutive), and has run a sub 3 marathon in three different decades. Oh, and he's 57, not that age matters when you are as fast as he is. And ran a sub 3 at Boston this year too. Sara is an elite equestrian who picked up running and is just speedy fast. I tried keeping her pace for about a mile at the Mid Winter Classic in February and just couldn't do it. It's so not fair that she's fantastic at two sports! Share the wealth, Sara!! Jeez.
Me, Gary and another Sarah, who is equally inspiring and fast. Ugh--so many fast Sarahs!!
Me, Kristal, Danielle and Sarah--the pro equestrian/fast runner Sara.
And of course, the story of Shalane Flanagan maintaining the lead at Boston at a blistering pace for the first 20 miles only to be overtaken and eventually beaten by Rita Jeptoo who also broke the marathon course record by 2:00. TWO MINUTES!
In between patients I was rushing in to my office to watch Boston being streamed live on my computer. Cheering like crazy when Shalane was leading. And still leading. And still leading. Then to come back and not see her at all. so sad, almost tears for a moment
Then to watch Rita as she is coming down the finish line.
With a two minute record. I was literally yelling at my desk, "GO GIRL! YOU GOT IT!" WOO!!!
And then Meb. Oh my, what to say about Meb. Again, more screaming at my desk.
Seriously, so inspired.
But in a way that is unattainable to me. I will never be able to run 5:00 minute miles. Not even one 5:00 mile. And certainly not 26 5:00 miles.
Fast forward to this past weekend. My friend Danielle, was running the Maine Coast Marathon. She is a regular gal like myself, who works, is a mom, and just happens to run. A lot. Danielle is not new to marathons, and she has completed 8 marathons prior to this race. Her first half marathon finish was almost exactly what my first half marathon finish was. She has since taken around 24 minutes off that half marathon time for a new PR of 1:40:11. She has seriously grown wings since having her baby and just this year has blasted 4 new PR's at the 5K, 10K, 10 mile and half marathon distances. She is focused and determined and works really hard to balance running, work and her life.
This weekend's marathon meant so much more to her than just a new PR. She has been busting her ass for the last 4 months training in incredibly horrible weather for this marathon. Rain, snow, treadmills at 4:30 a.m., she has done it all. I've followed her progress and watched her blast away old times and get PR after PR after PR. This was her race.
She got that PR. A 22 fucking minute PR!! TWENTY TWO MINUTES! 8:17 mile for 26.2 of them.
Danielle in white, one of the fast Sarah's in multicolor. Her crazy-ass-fast time in the background.
equestrian Sara and Danielle post race
Everyone in this blog post inspires me to want to do things. Everyone above gives me that push to continue on. Even though I'll never win a marathon, I can try my best. Even though I may never finish an Ironman, I can swim, bike and run in that sprint tri.
But Danielle inspires me the most. Danielle makes me feel that I can do it. She makes me think twice about saying no to doing a marathon. I'm not quite there yet, to say yes and sign up. But if I get to that point and reach that starting line, it's because she inspired me to do it. It's because through her actions and her words, she changed my mind.