I was at a seminar over the weekend where the presenter said the following, "Five years from now, you will be the exact same person you are today, changed only by the books you read and the people you meet." What an incredibly true statement. I look back over the past 5 years and am amazed at the changes I have gone through...but when it comes down to it, I'm the same person changed by the knowledge I've gained through the things I've read and the people who have inspired, influenced and driven me to make changes.
As the time winds down to this hefty goal of running a half marathon, I've been spending a lot of time self reflecting on these longer runs. I'm proud of myself. I stuck with my training, learned more than I ever thought imaginable, made some great new friends, inspired some close friends and family, and proved to myself that no goal is too high if you have a plan and stick with it.
When I cross that finish line, I anticipate a few tears. For many people, finishing a half marathon is a physical goal they wish to check off of their list. It's the next step in their training. For me, it's a new life. I never imagined how much running would change my life. As I began this journey, I was unsure if my knees could take it. I was unsure if my mind would let go of the fear. The weeks passed by and slowly I gained my confidence. I started running faster. I started running because I loved it. I found myself on google the other day searching for more races this summer and fall. I started thinking about vacations we could take where there are fun races. I started thinking about running on trails with my daughter in the future. That's enough to get the faucets pouring. I never truly believed I could run again. I thought I would tough it out for the half marathon and then go back to life as usual. Now there is a whole new life in front of me that I can't wait to share with friends and family. To think that one day, I'll run with Lyla in her first 5k (if she decides it's something she wants to do of course!) brings the biggest smile to my face and true joy in my heart.
It really is amazing to think about how so many people have influenced and changed my life. It's even more amazing to think of how I can help change other's lives. At the closing of the seminar, the speaker said, "Make sure that the people you meet are happy they met you." I honestly can't think of a better way to live.