Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Mind over Body - St. George Recap

Eight years ago, I ran the St. George Marathon.  Two weeks later I was at the doctors office being told I had an autoimmune disorder and would need to take medication for the rest of my life.  That really knocked the wind out of my sail.  Not only did I not feel in control of my body, I didn't feel good.  I was tired all the time.

Fast forward 8 years.  My friends signed up for the same race.  I thought why not.  I figured I wouldn't be able to run it, but I would go for the experience and just be happy I was there.  I ran a few long runs with them about half way through training.  My knees were hurting.  I just keep telling myself I would walk, and it would be okay.

Race day.  I am waiting at the start line with thousands of other runners.  The energy is intense.  All the sudden, I decided that I was running this race no matter what!  The race began and so off we went.

Mile 6 I was aware of my knees - darn that tight IT band!  I decided I didn't care and I was running anyway.  It was exhilarating to push myself, force my body to do what it was screaming it didn't want to.
Soon I was at mile 13 and feeling pretty good.  I had this!

By the time I hit mile 23 I couldn't feel my legs.  Really!  I started to get emotional.  Not because of my legs, but because I was in charge of me.  I felt so empowered that I was able to overcome my body.  I felt like I was in control again.  I am in charge and I will say when enough's enough - not my body.

I could hardly contain my tears as I crossed the finish line with my good friend Kaye.  Not only did I finish the race, I ran it 3 minutes faster than I did 8 years ago.  

What a wonderful day!  I still can't walk up the stairs or sit down very gracefully, but I conquered!  I am strong!  It makes me happy!

 Kaye and I in the back seat driving up to St. George.
 Dinner that night before the race with Ruth, who was there to cheer her hubby and the rest of us on!
 Tim, Billy, and I waiting to load the bus to take us to the top.
 Here's the whole gang waiting in anticipation for the race to begin!
 Kaye and I stuck together the whole race.  It was fun to have a friend along the way.

 I was about to fall over in this picture, but I was leaning on Kaye pretty heavy.
So happy to be done!

6 comments:

kt said...

congratulations!!! What a triumph!

Connie Lee said...

Melissa, You've never looked more beautiful nor more happy than in these pictures. I understand why this race was so important to you. You have conquered your health! What a remarkable fighting spirit you have... what a triumph of mind over body. I am so proud of you.

Laurie said...

You rock! I didn't even know you were going to try! You're my hero...I better go eat something crappy to make myself feel better! ha ha

Kelli Brown said...

Way to go, Melissa! So glad you ran it and even beat your last race time. So cool.

Elizabeth said...

Congratulations! I particularly appreciated your comment about becoming emotional, not because you couldn't feel your legs, but because you were in charge. So awesome!

My husband faces medical issues with his back daily but that in-charge feeling is huge for him.

Harper said...

Where's the "like" button? :)

 
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