If You Run It You Are A Winner

Hello from chilly Chicago!  We returned this weekend and it feels great.  Remember that tiny apartment we were in there?  Well I feel like I came home to a mansion, all two bedrooms of it!  It’s the little things…..

A few weeks ago when we returned to New York City right after the Chicago Marathon, I was still buzzing from coaching over one hundred runners.  My husband, on the other hand, was bummed about his race and already seeking revenge by looking for another.  If you didn’t see that post he was killing it up until mile 18.  We crossed paths around mile 10 and he was on par to break his 3:35 race goal.  Sometime after mile 18 he called me to let me know that something happened to his IT band he was going to have to walk the rest of the race.

When we returned to NYC many of our students asked him if he won his race.  He would laugh and say no.  One older student kept pressing and asking him how he did.  He jokingly said that he probably finished around 29.000th.  We both started laughing and the girl responded with, “So you lost?” My husband had a funny and sweet response but I started to feel a bit defensive.  Of course I knew she was a preteen and didn’t understand but my immediate response was, “Any one who runs and finishes a marathon is a true winner.”  It came out of my mouth so fast that even I was a bit surprised by my words.  I got chills….I inspired myself with those words.

I had to take a pic of this huge pre-NYC marathon shake out run.

I had to take a pic of this huge pre-NYC marathon shake out run.

But it is true.  Running isn’t easy.  In fact it can be quite miserable.  It can definitely suck at times.  It can feel painful, it does weird things to your body, you smell bad, strange places start bleeding on you,, there’s blisters….the list is endless.  But what it gives back to you makes every moment so worth it.  When you make the effort and take the time to train for and make a race, any race happen, you are truly a winner.

I once heard an elite runner talk about how difficult the last few miles of the race are and I was quite taken by what he said.  The reason was, that is just how I feel at the end of a race.  We both feel the same things near the finish.  He just happens to feel them earlier than I do and he is done way before me.  Everyone struggles during races and especially marathons.  They are meant to take you to the brink.  It is part of the challenge that we chose to face.  Regardless of when you cross the finish line, you pushed yourself and overcame those struggles.  That makes you a winner.

The first time my husband ran a marathon he didn’t know what to expect.  It was hard and at mile 20 he had to truly dig deep for those last few miles.  But he did it and he ran it faster than he ever imagined.  He worked incredibly hard to get there and he was filled with pride.  The second time he ran a marathon he again worked very hard, he had big goals and he made a great effort.  Unexpected things happened along the way that changed his plans and altered his goal.  As he pushed through and made his way to the finish it was a different hurdle to reach the end that time.  But he finished and the fact that he didn’t give up made him a true champion.  Both of those marathons were great efforts and both times he came out a winner.

I was so inspired by this huge 5K the morning before the marathon.  I loved seeing family members running to support their loved one's doing the marathon the next day.

I was so inspired by this huge 5K the morning before the marathon. I loved seeing family members running to support their loved one’s doing the marathon the next day.

For many of us, running doesn’t feel like it comes naturally.  It is a daily struggle for us.  It presents mental and physical challenges and this is part of the reason I love running.  It makes you a stronger person from the inside out.  Whether you are running a 5K or an ultramarathon, you are a winner for getting out of that door each day and getting your run on.

Congratulations to all of the runners who laced up and ran this past weekend.  Congrats to anyone who raced a 5K, 10K, half marathon or a full.  Of course a big congrats goes out to everyone who ran that windy NYC marathon course.  Yikes!

A big shout out goes to my girl Amy at FitnessMeetsFrosting.  She just ran her first marathon.  She is awesome go check her out and leave her a big congrats!

Happy Belated Halloween!

Happy Belated Halloween!


12 thoughts on “If You Run It You Are A Winner

  1. these words definitely resonate for me, and i’m sure they do for many runners. you’re right — it is challenging and hard and requires so much from us, mentally and physically and emotionally — and yet we push on because we love it, the feel of our sore legs carrying us forward and our happy hearts bursting at the thought of all we’ve accomplished and all we lived through. love your words, that anyone who finishes is a winner. great post.

  2. I love this post. It puts to words exactly how I feel about running but forget sometimes. Yes, it’d be nice to win some races, but just finishing your race (half marathon, full marathon, etc.) is winning!! (cheesiness, I know, but thank you for expressing exactly how I feel)

  3. It is so true – running is hard work… but it constantly surprises me, which is why I love it!
    Case in point – I entered a 16km / 10 mile race waaaay back, and my training was on par. Then a bunch of things happened and my training went out the window, and 3 weeks before the race I was not feeling it. But I made the decision to run it anyway and just take whatever the day gave me.
    The day before the race I came down with a nasty head cold and sinus infection and about 12 hours before the race was seriously considering pulling out.
    But I didn’t (I dread having a DNS next to my name) and on the day I ran that race feeling the best I have ever felt in a race that long (16 km’s is normally my “I-really-have-to-push-now” point in a half marathon) and I know that I was a bada$$ that day 🙂

  4. Well said! There isn’t a run that I go on that don’t reach a point where I want to quit, but we push through. A race is the ultimate challenge of that – no matter what your pace.
    Love the costumes! And Yay for Amy!

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