We’re sure you’ll stuff about this all over your Instagram & Facebook feeds today…We all know that runners like to talk/post about running, and with their own special day, that talking/posting will be off the charts. But here’s our take on it…
…It’s a good thing. Why not have a special day for runners? But did you know that it always falls on the 1st Wednesday of June? So it’s kind of like the Thanksgiving of exercise holidays. But to us, it doesn’t really matter which day it falls on, because we’ll be running anyways. That’s just what we love to do. But anything that encourages others to hit the pavement, treadmills or trails is a-okie-dokie by us.
But did you also know that besides GRD, there’s also National Running Day? We’re not sure about other countries, but in the US of A it coinkidentally falls on the same day as GRD – so don’t go stressing about getting your favorite runner a second present or anything.
Here’s what the internets says about NRD, “This day was designated as a day for runners to reaffirm their passion for running. It is also a good day for beginners to begin a life-changing commitment to running.”
And here’s what it says about GRD, “Global Running Day is a worldwide celebration of running that encourages everyone to get moving. It doesn’t matter how fast you run or how far you go—what’s important is that you take part, and how you do it is up to you.”
••How to Get Involved••
Firstly, you could just go outside for run, walk or crawl. Easy peasy. We’ll be doing this.
Secondly, go for a run with a friend (or lover). This will be what we do too.
Thirdly, visit a local social run. There is no diggitiy no doubt that every running club or store around town will be hosting something special. We’ll also be doing this.
Fourthly, you can go to on the internets and let people know. Post one of those aforementioned IG or FB pics. Go to GlobalRunningDay.org and pledge to run some miles (or kilometers). Or find a for-profit company and pledge to run with them, like the Brooks event. We are also doing this too, as well.
So soak it in, runners. This is the one day that you can post about running and non-runners are not allowed to get annoyed by it. Enjoy Global Running Day everyone…Or as our buddy Carlos puts it…
Alrighty then, we’re off to run!
How bout you? How will you celebrate Global (National) Running Day? How often do you annoy your non-runner friends with talking/posting about running?
Yes, we actually got married DURING a marathon. Not right after, not before, but DURING. We ran 26 miles, paused for the ceremony, then ran the last .2 as husband and wife. We started the marathon engaged and ended it married. Crazy.
Still can’t believe we pulled it off. Right up until the day of the race, we weren’t exactly sure how it would go down. Don’t get us wrong, we planned and stuff, but trying to coordinate a wedding in the middle of a marathon left some balls in the air. But juggled them we did…and of course, we got by with a little help from our friends.
If you don’t know what we’re talking about, you can check out this post. And if you want to see the actual video we made of the race and wedding, check it out here.
Did you watch the video? Good, now we can move on.
The weekend was such a whirlwind, but we’ll try to capture it in this post. Here’s what had happened. We flew into Phoenix a few days before the race. We were staying with our maid of honor – Helly on the Run – and her hubby, the best man, Ben. After lunch at our fave restaurant, Oreganos, we did something ill-advised before a marathon….road trip. But we knew this race was just for fun for us, so we did it anyway. Scott’s dadio hadn’t been to Tombstone, AZ, so we drove the 3+ hours there. Saw the sights, then drove back. It was worth it. So much history and fun.
Celebrated National Margarita Day in Tombstone with moms and dads!
The next day we did a 2+ mile shakeout run with Helly. While we were going into this race just as a training run for Marsha’s upcoming Boston Marathon debut, Helly was going into this race for her own BQ. She was focused and ready. S&M were having fun…as we ought to do.
We had brunch with some Dallas friends before meeting up with more friends, including Carlos The Runner at the Expo. It was an outdoor expo, don’t get to attend too many of those, kinda dig it. We got our race stuff, got some race souvenirs, and took some selfies.
Oh, we also spoke with the race director to make sure everything was coolio. We scouted out the wedding location and gave her the info. She wanted to relay it to the PoPo. She was afraid that a crowd gathering might raise their eyebrows, and she didn’t want them to swarm us or anything. As Helly’s Canadian friend said when we told her, “Oh yeah, you guys have to worry about that kind of stuff in the States.”
After the expo, we ate Oreganos again. In fact, we took it back to Helly and Ben’s house because they were kind enough to invite several people visiting for the wedding/race over for a mini party. Again, ill-advised the night before a marathon, but we were having fun seeing everyone. In fact, we got to meet a few internet friends in person for the first time, including A Fast Paced Life. She had flown in from New York City for the festivities and to run the half marathon. Also in attendance were M’s friends who drove in from Cali, as well as S’s cousin who would be officiating the ceremony, among others.
We tried to get to bed early, doe because we had an early wake up call – something like 2 am. The race would start at 6:00, but we had to drive to the finish area, then take a long bus ride to the starting line 26.2 miles away. It’s kind of cool being up on the desert mountain in the middle of the night morning. Just 3000 runners, a bunch of cactuses, and 80 port-a-potties…Oh yeah, that was about the only hiccup of the day. We were in line to pee so long, we missed the start of the race. We eventually got going about 10 minutes after the gun.
It was perfect temps, just like last year. 37 degrees at the start. Little wind. No humidity to speak of at all. We started down the mountain, gradually shedding our throw-away clothes as we warmed up (they said the discards would be donated to charity – we hope she has a big closet). Speaking of which, our race singlets were just so much us. We found them at Red Shirt Running, and they were perfect! Our friend Christie also made a veil for M to wear. Sew kewt!
The start was almost pitch dark, but the sun eventually rose around mile 3. The course is good – a few miles downhill, two uphill, a few down, then it’s flat flat flat for most of the way home. It’s so flat, and since you go through several stretches without making any turns, we could actually see the mile markers when they were a half mile away abouts.
Along the run we got several comments from the other runners. Many said they had heard of us. Many said they knew of us because we’re friends of the internet famous Helly. Many asked us about our outfits. We received a buttload of, “Awwwwwwws.” We got a few handshakes. One funny dude said we should’ve had the bride’s father walk her down the aisle…hahaha, that’d be a 26 mile journey. There were a ton of, “Congratulations!” from both runners and spectators. We gotta tell you, the running community is grrrrrrreat!
Like we said, we were treating this as a fun run and a training run. With S’s stress fracture and M’s hammy issues over the past year, we really only had one month to try and train for this marathon. Ill-advised, we know. That said, we did aight running-wised, despite our out of shapeness. We did our best to smile through it…and the miles did seem to tick off fairly quickly.
When we approached mile 26, there was a turn right before it, so we couldn’t see if our guests had gathered or where. Even though we had picked the general location the day before, we didn’t know exactly where they’d be able to set up. And we knew parking could be a challenge for the guests. We were also wondering if our friends going for BQ’s and PR’s had gotten them. We hoped they’d be done with their races in time to join us. But we just didn’t know what we’d find when we turned that corner. But then we heard someone yelling our names. At last we saw them. To our pleasant surprise, they had all made it and set up right in the middle of the street! Everyone going for BQ’s and PR’s had gotten them. The out of town guests made it too. It was perfect!
Since S carried a GoPro to record our race running, M carried a phone so we could Facebook live the wedding when we got to that point. We started the broadcast, we got situated, S’s parents gave us the flowers and also had balloons, cuz Nikki’s kids were the ring bears and her hubby the FB live cameraman, S’s mom took photos, Ben and Helly took their spots, other friends started their FB live streams, the race runners kept going past us, strangers took photos, a race photographer snuck in and took pics, cuz Nikki officiated the ceremony.
Cuz Nikki had gotten ordained to do this. She wrote the script. She did an amazing job. Just simply amazing. What she said was perfect. She made sure to include our kids who couldn’t make it from Texas. Again, she did awesome.
After the vows, a stranger yelled, “Hurry up and finish, the clock is ticking.” Hahaha, he was right, we had to get er done. We ran to the finish line hand in hand. The race announcer called our names and told everyone how we got married during the race. The cheers were loud. It was perfect. A photographer took our picture and told us he’d seen countless proposals at races, but never an actual wedding. We got some more high fives and, “Congratulations”. We were happy.
Oh, you want to know our time? We didn’t even check the official results. It was somewhere around 4:19 or 4:20 we think. Not bad for the lack of training, lack of proper race preparation, and not bad for pausing the running to hold a freakin wedding ceremony!!!!! Woohoo! We’re married!
After the race, the parking attendant (Kevin) near the Bermz car asked why we were wearing our wedding outfits. We explained. He said, “Whoa! Wait right there, I have a special treat for you!” He ran to his car and assembled his saxamaphone. Then he played “Here Comes The Bride” for us right there in the parking lot. It’s just too much to handle.
After a quick shower, we were off to the “reception”. Any guesses where? Yup, Oreganos. We don’t know what they put in their food to make it taste so dang yummy. The private room was waiting for a small group of our friends and family. It was so relaxed and happy and fun. Our waitress was quite the photographer as well, directing us as to what to do and stuff.
That night was low key…well, except for when Carlos came over. Action and adventure always seem to follow that guy around, lolol.
The next day was brunch again…Thanks Elle!!! Then more food. And just like the rest of the weekend, being Godparents, we spent lots of time playing with the kiddos!
Monday was the last day of our adventure. It included food, of course. What else, what else? Oh yeah, S&M&Helly got Phoenix tattoos!!!!!! We wanted to commemorate the race where in the past two years we have all either PR’d, BQ’d or gotten married!
And so ends part uno of our wedding adventure. Coming up next – Part Deux, the Dallas Celebration! That will be another epic post. Hope to have it for you in the coming days.
How bout you? Do you turn race trips into epic racecations? Have any race tattoos? Will you join us if we run Phoenix next year for our one year anniversary????
So, in a matter of days we’ll be running the Phoenix Marathon. But not just that, we’ll also be getting married during the race. But yes also, we ran this race last year. So for those of you who may be running, or thinking of running this race, we’re here to give you the highdown.
First off, people like to say this is a downhill race. It is…But it’s no Revel. We’re sorry, but we gotta say that we are not fans of the Revel races. Running thousands of feet downhill just seems like cheating. Well, doesn’t seem, it probably is. Thousands of feet net decline?!?! We mean, come on. That said, Phoenix is downhill, but that’s deceiving. It’s a net 800 feet or so down from start to finish (not 5000 feet like a Revel). But also…there is a good 2 mile incline in the full. It goes a little something like this: You run downhill a few miles, you run uphill a couple miles, you run downhill a few more miles, then it’s flat, flat, flat, flat the rest of the way. That’s the nature of the beast. It’s still a runner friendly course: It’s a bit downhill net, it’s point to point, and the course is mostly straight roads (not many turns), around 20% of runners BQ, and race pics are freeeeeeee!
OK, we thinks we’ve gone off on a tangent…let’s regroup.
This is a great race…We love it! This is where Marsha BQ’d!!! This is where we’re getting hitched! This is where our besties live. This is the Valley of the Sun.
And no, this is not the Rock n Roll Phoenix race. That’s the first thing everyone always axes. This is the Phoenix Marathon. Phoenix like the bird who comes back to life from fire. Which is admittedly weird because this race doesn’t even take place in Phoenix, technically it’s in Mesa.
Here’s how it goes: You get up at the butt crack of night to drive to the race finish area. They bus you up to the top of a mountain. It’s freezing cold. They have fires going to keep you warm. It’s pitch perfect dark. They warn you not to wander off the road lest you may encounter a chupacabra or the like. There are no corals. It’s very chill. The race starts early. Early. The sun is not yet up. But once you start running, the sun slowly rises. There is no more glorious sight than the first break of dawn crawling over the cactus covered mountainous desert.
up on a mountain and it’s freezing!
As we said, you go downhill a couple miles. But then you hit the uphill. It’s a good two miles. It sucks. But once you conquer the zenith, you the get reward of going back gravity towards. This part goes through a little mountain side neighborhood. There’s not much crowd support in this race, but this is one of the biggest athletic supporter areas.
Once you get off the mountain, you’re ground level. You are running flat the rest of the way. One thing we love is that the roads are so flipping straight. You don’t have to worry about breaking stride to make turns. You just keep on cruisin.
B to the W, the weather is great. Being the desert, there ain’t much humidity to speak of. Ain’t much wind neither. Last year it was 37 degrees American at the start…Around 50 degrees American at the finish. Perfecto. We went with Helly to Wallfart the day before the race to buy $2 sweat clothes to wear at the start (We threw them off a couple miles in). Again, perfecto.
But alas, here in lies the rub. Lettuce give you our experience, race-wise. Marsha really wanted to BQ. She needed a 3:45, which meant we wanted a 3:40 to be safe. That’s roughly an 8:25 pace per mile. Scott was the pacesetter. Helly said before the race that she wanted to run with us as long as she could. She had just PR’d at NY a few months earlier at just under 4 hours. But she’s a strong runner, getting stronger by the day. So off we went. Scott spent the entire race saying, “Moooooon (his nickname for Marsha).” Meaning, “Marsha, slow it down.” Moon. Mooon. Mooooon. Moooooon. Moooooon. Mooooooooon. The theme of the race. Keeping Marsha in check so she didn’t burn out early. Helly termed this, “In Scott we trust.”
A couple miles in, another nameless friend said, “I can’t keep running this slow.” He took off (we would see him again later, walking around mile 20). But we were focused on the pace goal. It worked. We were cruising. It felt like a jog. The best marathon we had ever run. Around mile 18, Helly put her earphones in. We knew that meant she was starting to ride the struggle bus. She trailed off a bit. We kept on keeping on. At mile 20 Scott said that since we felt good, we could start to push it. We did. These were our fastest miles of the race. Not to brag, but that is so smart…keeping it in the tank so we had something in the tank for the end of the race. “Banking” time is dumb, fo real doe. It’s way much better to finish strong.
But then something bad happened. At mile 23, Scott had to stop. His foot said, “No more, hombre.” But he didn’t want Marsha to miss out on her BQ, so he told her to go on and finish strong. She did. Scott had to limp in the last 3 miles. It sucked. It hurt. It was like a lime had been put in the bottom of his shoe. Turns out his foot was broken, but we didn’t know that until later. Yeah, a stress fracture had fractured his foot. But he still finished in a PR of 3:43, despite having to hobble in.
Marsha, meanwhile was focused. She was focused on finishing strong. She was focused on all the negative things people had said or done to us the past few years when we found each other and ourselves. She used that to embody determination. She turned it positive. She used it for fuel. She used that to BQ. She finished in 3:40.
At the finished line she waited as Scott hobbled in. We were pleased. Then something else amazing happened, we turned around and saw Helly hight tailing it. She had pushed through to finish a little behind Scott with a 15 minute PR! Then we saw her hubby, he had also PR’d (he’s much faster than all of us, so we won’t talk about times ;)). Then we saw our friend J, who had PR’d the half and breaking 2 hours. Even our nameless friend who burn out early had rallied and ran some 20 minutes faster than the marathon he had just run in Houston. It was all good.
The post race party was aight. No free beer like at most races now-a-days, but no worries, we had tequila in the car. And we were happy.
Can’t wait for the Phoenix Marathon! Can’t wait to see everyone! Can’t wait to get married! Can’t wait see how it all goes!
Have you ever run this race? What makes a race special for you?
We’re not running this race this year, but we ran this race last year. So we’re here to give you the lowdown.
Where it be: In old McKinney at the Tupps Brewery.
How it works: You and your partner run a 5k. They combine your ages and finish times. They determine winners based on those combined times/ages.
What’s the course: Basically an out and back with several turns along the way.
What we think: We had a few problems with this race. First and foremost, the course was almost a quarter mile long. And don’t tell us that it was our Garmins. It wasn’t. It was long, and that sucks. We knew it was long when we hit the halfway point and still had a ways to go before the turn-around. Just look at the stats in the first picture of this post. That said, it was the same for everyone. But hopefully they got it fixed for this year.
The next problem – No free beer after the race. We mean, come on! It’s held at a brewery for crying out loud. Not even one free beer? If you want a beer, you have to pay for it. And personal opinion: we don’t really like Tupps beers. They are all so hoppy. Not our style. That said, the brewery itself is pretty dang cool. Nice location to chill out at.
How’d we do: We finished 2nd overall!!! We weren’t too far behind first place, but unfortunately that team had the overall race winner – somewhere around 16 minutes, so that’s how they won. But hey, we got another trophy!
Oh yeah, one last issue – Each team had to come up with a team name. Ours was “Team S&M, Bringin’ The Pain!” Clever, right? Well when they announced we had come in 2nd, they wouldn’t announce our team name. They thought it was too NSFW. Sheesh, that’s living in the Bible Belt for ya, lol. It was innocent – S&M stands for Scott and Marsha. And 5k’s are painful, so that’s where we got the name <wink wink>.
Oh yeah again, one last issue – We asked our friend Alex to take our photo. He did this:
Actually, we don’t have an issue with this – we do it to people all the time. Even strangers who ask us to take their picture. Haha, such characters we be.
What’s the conclusion: It’s an OK race, hopefully they got the distance worked out. We hope everyone has fun running it!
Our blog selves must’ve been eating too much cheese, because we haven’t been very regular. Apologies, but life with a blended family tends to get in the way. Soccer games, orchestra concerts, school pick-ups, work drop offs….it’s crazy round these parts. Oh, and something else had happened… WE GOT ENGAGED!!!
Here’s the story. Scott’s sister was in Californ-i-a for work for a few months. She wanted to run a race before being sent back home and there was a half marathon coming up in the wine country. Welp, we looked up airfares, not expecting to be able to go, but guess what had happened…they were cheap AF. Round trip DFW>OAK=<100 skrilla units. Sold!
So our trip was set. We’d fly to Cali, Sis would pick us up, We’d stay with her, Run the race, Drink some vino. But then a not so funny thing happened. Sis texted saying her boss is sending her home early. Dang. Then, Cali erupts into flames. Race canceled. The only reasons we were taking this trip were gone in a flash (literally).
Do we cancel our flight? Nah, not the RDL style. We go anyway. Book last minute car, hotel in San Fran and AirBNB in Pacific Grove. And Scott does something sneaky…he goes online to one of those athletic silicone wedding ring websites and orders some to be sent to his work address. Why did he do this? He decided that since the original trip reasons were ruined, to make lemonade out of gatorade.
When/Where would the proposal come? Marsha had recently commented that she saw on the Instagrams the sweetest proposal between Emma Coburn and Joe Bosshard WHILE THEY WERE ON A RUN. Light bulb moment for Scott. Sooo…Scott had looked up google street view for possible locations to pop the question while running in Pacific Grove. You see, it’s on the ocean. Lots of scenic views. He saw a few possibilities, but nothing set in sand. He’d wing it.
Scott didn’t want to wait long. After arriving at the BNB, he determined the next morning’s run would suffice. Suffice to say, it worked. The run started through the old town. Lots of 150 year old houses. Gorgeous. Then we hit the coast. There was a park called Lovers Point. Perfect spot, right? Nah, too cheesy, thought Scott. We’ll find a better spot.
It was overcast. The waves crashed along the rocky coast. Such a beautiful spot to run. We got away from town – heading towards the 17 mile drive (Carmel, Spyglass, Pebble Beach, etc.). There was an old lighthouse. Golf course. Just awesome. Scott kept scouting for spots. Here’s a nice cove – oh wait, there’s another proposal going on – they’re not going to steal our thunder. Oh, here’s a nice cove – what’s that plaque? Oh, this is where John Denver crashed his plane and perished. Nevermind. Here’s a picturesque cove…Scott just has to set up the phone to video the experience…Damnit, it won’t sit against the bench. “Just ask someone to take out picture.” yells Marsha. Nevermind, there’s too many people here now.
We continue the run back to town. Scott begins to think it won’t happen this day. But then a so funny thing happens. We get to Lovers Point Park. The crowds disperse. We’re alone. Scott finds some rocks to prop the phone up against and hits record. Marsha is cold. Wants to keep moving. Scott takes her gloves off. “Why?” she asks. “So you can put this ring on.’ He retorts.
She says yes.
We finish the run. We celebrate. But the celebration is another story. You’ll hear that next.
Peace & Love, Y’all,
S&M – RDL
Questions: Do you have a proposal story? Do you take runcations?
This weekend is the Chicago Marathon. For all y’all running it, we wish you the best of times! We ran it in 2015 – our first marathon together – and absolutely LOVED it! This post gives you our advice…take it if you want, give it back if you don’t.
RUN FOR CHARITY:
Both of us ran this race on behalf of charities. M raised money for the Special Olympics, as M’s brother has Downs Syndrome. S raised skrilla for Alzheimer’s Association, as S’s G-pa passed away from it. This is a great way to run this race if you don’t want to go the lottery route…Or if you just want to do some good! Combined, we raised a few thousand dollars!
This is a bit of a beating. The site is quite a ways from downtown. There are shuttle busses. The ride is long, but at least we had good company.
The expo is pretty crowded and overwhelming at times. But they do have free beer, so hooray for that. Brews are needed to deal with the crowds and commute.
This is fun. A day before the race, tons of people met at The Bean. We took selfies and got a little 2-3 miles in along the shore. Then more selfies, duh.
Get there early. A crap ton of people run this race. You gotta navigate people to the tune of 40+ large to get to the porta-johns, gear check, and corrals.
They paint a line on the street throughout the course – this line is the shortest distance of the race – try to follow it. It will help you hit your tangents.
Everyone says the race is “pancake flat”. Mostly true, but like grandma’s mashed taters, there are a few lumps in it. Mainly the bridges over the rivers. Don’t be surprised by them*.
1st half of the race is downtown and mainly in the shade from the skyscrapers**. This is a good thing. Helps keep it cool. 2nd half of the race is on the outskirts of town. It can be sunny and warm. This was not a good thing. Be ready for it.
Those same tall buildings that shade you, also jack with your GPS**. Everyone, we mean everyone, around us had inaccurate mileage on their Garmins. Mile alerts were beeping at random times. Don’t worry about it, just run your race and don’t obsess over your watch.
Crowd support is AMAZING! Nearly 2 million people cheering their Windy City heads off. And the ethnic neighborhoods have themes – dancing lions in Chinatown, mariachis in Little Mexico and drag cheerleaders in Boystown. Soak it in.
Do. Not. Go. Out. Too. Fast. It’s easy to do in the shaded and boisterous first half. We both made the mistake of thinking we could go faster than we could in the beginning. Suffice it to say, we did not have negative splits this day.
There is a hill*. At. The. Very. End. Of. The. Race. “Pancake flat” they said…yeah, not at the end it’s not. Be ready for that stoopid hill.
Enjoy the after party – beer, music and really really tired people make for a good time.
After you recover a bit, spend the next couple days sightseeing sightseeing sightseeing!
OUR CHICAGO STORY
Personally, we learned a lot running this race. It’s one of our best and favorite marathons ever! We both PR’ed by 20 minutes S: 3:48:28 & M: 3:45:50. Our only regret was that we did not run together. We were assigned different corrals, but we should have found a way to start together. And after seeing our splits online, we realized we would have been right next to each other, just like in training.
We spent the entire 26.2 miles looking for each other. It was an amazing race, but we were sad we didn’t share it together step by step. After that day, we promised ourselves we’d never run separately again. Since then, we’ve run every half and full marathon side by side.
That said, when S crossed the finish line he immediately stopped, turned around and desperately hoped to see M. But there were 40+ thousand folks in this race. How could we possibly find each other in that mess? But about 30 seconds later, it happened: M crossed the finish line we had the biggest hug. We were happy we had a good race result, but happier that we had found each other.
This race also brought us our best good friends in the whole wide world of sports…
First, M got to meet S’s college bud, Rexy (who is fast AF – she ran this race in 3:05). And even though she lives in the great state of Ohio, we’ve all become very close. That’s what happens when good chill people come together. LOVE HER!
Second, we got to meet in person for the first time, the ever so internet famous HellyOnTheRun!
Her and her Hubby have since become our bestest friends ever…our “ride or die”. They even made us Godparents to their sweet little Benny! Can you believe that?!? Some people who we first met over the internet are now so important in our lives. And Chicago was the first in-person meeting. Destiny.
And with this motely crue of misfits, we spent the next couple days frolicking around Chi-Town. It was the. Best. Time. Evah.
GOOD LUCK to everyone running Chicago this weekend, YOU will ROCK IT! And who knows, it may even change your lives for the better forever.
Questions: Do you have any tips for running the Chicago Marathon? Do you have any questions about Chi-Marathon? Have you ever met someone from the internet in person?
Life can be messy and sometimes ugly – but with the right person life is beautiful and amazing. We didn’t get to our lives together in the “traditional” way. We met thru running and it’s why it’s such a big part of our lives.
But let’s get to the messy parts first – We were both married to other people when we met each other. Our previous lives had us in partnerships that weren’t really that. We did countless things alone, and learned to accept it. Don’t get us wrong, marriage is a beautiful thing. Our marriages were happy in the beginning, but just as a tree grows from a single stem into several branches that move away from each other, so did our married relationships. Pictures and smiles and social media say one story, but as the saying goes, don’t judge a book by it’s cover.
We recently heard about a study on really happy people – and the overwhelming majority of them could trace their contentment back to the quality of their relationships with other people in their lives. It wasn’t money, or possessions, or anything else…it’s relationships that make people happy.
That all said, we both got divorces. Divorce is an awful process. But it’s not necessarily a bad thing. On the contrary, it can lead to all parties involved being happier than they’ve been.
Lettuce get to some running now…We ran alone. Sure, we often ran with groups, but the majority of mornings we were hitting the lonely streets solo. Running lets you see and experience amazing things that most people never see. Oh how we longed to share all those amazing things with someone.
Even surrounded by thousands of people in races, we still felt alone. Most races we only had strangers to cheer for us or run next to us.
39th MCM (Marine Corps Marathon)
Inaugural Dopey Challenge
See those two sets of pics up there? They were taken the same year. But we could’ve chosen pretty much any race from any year. Whether one mile or 26.2 miles, it is a long way to suffer all alone.
But then a curious thing happened. The both of us registered to run the Chicago Marathon on behalf of charities. Curiouser was that we only lived about 3 miles apart. Curiousest was that we both run pretty much the same pace. Boom, we each now had a training partner. And that’s where our story begins.
We had known of each other for years from being part of different running groups, but when we started training for Chicago, that’s when we really got to know each other. We ran hundreds and hundreds of miles together. We told each other about our other lives. How lonely we were. How our smiles were a facade. We grew close through these miles.
***The above pics are from one of our first races together. First place overall for S and first female for M!!! OK, so even if this particular 5k course was a mile short, who cares, it was the same distance for everyone. And now our finishing times are on the internets forever muahahahaha!***
Anyway, the Chicago training went on. 650 miles together. Some easy, some tough. And some were even brutal…during a 20 mile run, S gave in. We were lost. S sat on the curb, defeated. He started to hold back tears and kept saying to M that S wasn’t made for marathons. Or the the time M had to stop running during our 17 miler from a blister and sat near the bathrooms at White Rock Lake while S, exhausted, had to run back 7 miles to the car so he could come back and get M. M was shivering and blue from dehydration on a humid summer day. And it’s in these moments of defeat where we found strength in each other.
For every “bad” run, there were 50 “good” ones. We saw sunrises, wildlife, meteor showers, quiet streets, pre-busy parks, etc. etc. etc. Finally, someone to share these experiences with! Once we longed for someone to share our early morning miles with, and now that we had that person, it was even better than we hoped for.
And by the way, all the training together paid off. We both had 20+ minute PRs in Chi-town!
And by the time of Chicago, we realized how much we had in common (running, yoga, dancing, karaoke, candles, tequila, etc)…and that we needed each other. We knew we made each other happy.
Fast forward to 2017 and we are together. It took a while to get where we are now. We’ve lost friendships and family members along the way, but we’ve also gained wonderful and supportive friends and family to help us through. With their strength and the love of our 4 kids- J, M, G and G – our lives are full of blended happiness and adventures.
We run together every morning, and yes, even in races.
Rest assured, you can trust our smiles on our social media now.
What about you? Do you have someone you can run with? Answer in the comments!
PS. We’re just getting this blog up and running, but it will be more and more regularly posted in as we get it all settled. Please come back soon!