The Marathon

I started running back in 2012. It was really out of necessity. I was two kids in and could not run after them at the park when they took off on me. It was pathetic. It was also the cheapest thing I could do to get in shape and didn’t take a lot of time out of my already busy day.

Fast forward 8 years. I’ve run three half marathons, a handful of 10ks and many 5ks. And then the pandemic hit and I stopped running. (Okay, so I shouldn’t really blame the pandemic – several other things happened like a major depressive episode, my dad moving into a retirement home and a busy life with three kids). But suffice it to say, I got lazy. And soft.

One afternoon while sitting on my front lawn with my neighbors for a “physically distanced drink” my girlfriend texted me about having to walk her London marathon virtually and asked me to join her for a portion of it. I was a glass or three in when I wrote “I’ll do it all with you!”

So I started going for more walks to train. I started walking 10 km once a week to work and it felt good. About once a week I force myself out for a run, which is really mostly walking with some running. Every October where I live there is a big race and this year it went virtual, of course. The race organizers offered a deal where you can sign up for all four distances (5 km, 10 km, 21.1 km and 42.2 km) with the stipulation that you have to complete them during the month of October. Participants can run or walk the distances.

So, I signed up for all four races. I mean, it’s just walking, right? Can’t be that hard, and I figured I would run a little too. It was the motivation I needed to get my ass off the couch and exercise

The 5 km and 10 km races were easy. Not my best times to be sure, but that was to be expected given how lazy I’ve been all year.

I set out for the half marathon two weekends ago. By 12 km I started flirting with the idea of just doing the marathon. It had been weighing on my mind a lot. I was rightly scared of the distance and as I imagined finishing the half marathon I realized that I might not want to start over again another day to do the full. So after some back and forth texting with my husband who was at home with our 3 kids, I decided to seriously consider doing the marathon.

And I did!!!

The second half was grueling. My brother and his wife met me around 30 km and walked 4 km with me. The distraction was exactly what I needed because by then my hips started to hurt, the blisters on my heels were burning and I was feeling defeated. At 40 km I started texting my husband to meet me. I tried running a little because that didn’t hurt nearly as much as walking did.

And then I looked at my watch and saw it.

I became a marathoner.

And I’m pretty sure I will do it again. But maybe in a year.

A Walk In the Woods

On this first day of December we took the kids out for a walk in the woods. What I love most about living in this city is that there are woods about a 5-10 minute walk away from my house.

We were a lazy family yesterday. I don’t think any one of us changed out of our pajamas! So, this morning after a lovely homemade pancake breakfast we bundled everyone up, the baby in the Bjorn carrier and off we went.

It was a perfect morning for a walk. Not too cold with a little drizzle of rain. I could sense the kids were not going to start complaining of their legs hurting from the moment we stepped outside because they were so excited to be walking to the trail. The toddler practically skipped along the sidewalk. We promised him we’d try to see the ducks in the creek. We even brought snacks along the way, not only for the kids but for the ducks as well.

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Along the trail are power lines, or as the kids call them, “robots”. You can walk underneath them and husband took this neat photo from underneath the structure.

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I turned on my MapMyRun app and tracked our walk. We walked 2.71 km and in and of itself that’s not a long distance but considering we had the kids with us and they walked with us, it was good exercise for them. The eldest walked the entire way while the toddler had some help from dad.

We had a lovely morning in the woods. I can’t wait to do it again.