Tag: half marathon

Thirteen Point One

On May 1, 2016, I stood at the finish line of the Lincoln Marathon. I was a volunteer, trying desperately to move the crowds of finishers along as they got to the tunnel within Memorial Stadium. I had volunteered a few hours the day before at packet pickup, but I wasn’t as prepared for marathon day as I had hoped. It was cold, my body ached and I had to leave about an hour early as my left side cried for some relief.

What a difference a year makes.

The 2017 Lincoln Half-Marathon was my fifth half-marathon. It should have been my sixth, maybe seventh, but things changed as we know now. It wasn’t always an easy journey to get where I am, but I got here.

That journey is a big reason I cried at the starting line and again when I finished. To think I had stood not far from where I was handed my medal, desperate to just keep standing only one year before, was something I couldn’t get over. All of the emotions that poured out of me, especially at the finish line, were in response to everything that had happened over the previous year and a half. It was joy, sadness, excitement and everything in between.

I’ll never forget Jim, who stopped me at the finish line, right as I grabbed my medal. We know each other thanks to Twitter, and he formally introduced himself. He was volunteering this year, anxious to get back in the race next year. I cried as he hugged me, and it was a genuine moment I’ll never forget.

That’s the thing about this community – my community. It has never failed. It never feels deserved, but I am thankful for it.

To Kyle for battling back from the same journey as I did and crossing that finish line even stronger. To my mom for her constant support and sign-making. To Jenny, Brett, Harper and Hadley for the smiles on Sheridan. To Nancy, Laura, Kyra and Camden for the hugs on 48th (although Camden technically just stared at me like I was crazy). To Libby for the extra cheers when she spotted me on the course. To the little girl who yelled “Girl Power!” as I gave her a high-five on South. To Erin and her boys for the high fives and cheers on the trail. To the pacer who encouraged me forward on 10th street. To Jim for the hugs and taking my photo as I stood at the finish line. To every person that tweeted and messaged me support and encouragement. There are no words to truly thank you.

It wasn’t my fastest race – I ended around 2:45 – but I finished. And considering one year ago I stood in the same spot unable to even finish my volunteer shift, finishing is all that matters.

On to the next.




Motivation Monday: Week 6

Oh, hey! We’ve officially hit the halfway mark on the half-marathon training. This week was a light week to rest up before some high mileage and I’ll be honest… I really took advantage of that. In fact, I missed a day of running and sort of shrugged it off. Whoops?

Anyway, here’s how the week shaped up:

  • Monday: Rest
  • Tuesday: 3.31 miles
  • Wednesday: Rest
  • Thursday: 3.12 miles
  • Friday: Rest
  • Saturday: Rest
  • Sunday: 3.15 miles

Look at all that rest! Eh, whatever though. I had one of my best runs on Sunday (which was a 5K race) and kept a 10’38” pace. Can’t complain about that.

I am to the point in training though where I’m starting to worry about my shins (I get bad shin splints) and my knees are sore, but I’m trucking on. If you have any tips/suggestions for either, I’ll take ’em.

Cheers to another week,


Monday Motivation: Week 5 Recap


Five weeks down and seven to go… Not feeling a big ol’ intro this week, so let’s just get to the recap. Cool? Cool.

  • Monday: Rest
  • Tuesday: Rest
  • Wednesday: 3.28 miles
  • Thursday: 2.12 miles
  • Friday: 3.59 miles
  • Saturday: Rest
  • Sunday: 6 miles

A couple of quick thoughts:

  • I rested too much this week.
  • Six miles made my knees hurt, so I can’t wait to do 13.1!
  • No Jacks again this week, but I suspect he’ll make his big return in Week 6.

The good news? Week 6 is a lighter week. It’s the halfway marker for training and the “long run” is a 5K race, which is a welcomed break.

Cheers to the week, you guys.


P.S. It was warm enough this last week to wear shorts to run outside! It was exciting. Here’s photo evidence:


Motivation Monday: Let the training begin

Today marks the first day of half-marathon training for the Lincoln Half-Marathon on May 7. I’m following the same training plan I’ve always used, which is the Novice 1 program from Hal Higdon. I am nothing but a creature of habit.

I decided to use “Motivation Monday” as a way to motivate myself and hold myself accountable on this journey. I plan to share my previous week’s runs, talk about what went well and not so well and everything in between. I just hope by doing this it documents my journey from square one to getting back to 13.1 miles.

You see, a little over a year ago, a half-marathon would have been no big deal. I had run four of them, plus a variety of smaller races. In fact, a year ago this past weekend I scaled the First National Tower in Omaha for Trek Up the Tower. I had plans for 2016 beyond that, too. The Lincoln Half-Marathon, another half-marathon in the fall, Boys Town’s Memorial Day Run and more. It was all planned.

And then the accident happened. I wish I could explain what that did to me, but the recovery from the burns, the internal injuries and my own mental health were a lot to overcome (and I still am overcoming them some days). I was given the OK to start running late in the summer, and I did here and there, but then football season came along and I figured I’d get back to it eventually.

Today is eventually.

I was supposed to run three miles. I ran two. They weren’t fast miles, but Jacks and I trudged along. By the end, my lungs were on fire but my legs and my brain were thanking me for what I had just done. For someone who never liked to run all that much, I somehow became a runner over the years. I guess I didn’t realize how much I had missed it.

I know this won’t be easy. I haven’t been on a regular run schedule in over a year and a lot has happened in that time. But I plan to dedicate every step I take in this journey to all those miles I personally lost in 2016 and to every single person no longer here to keep going on their own journeys because of drunk drivers. That will keep me motivated.

And it will make crossing the finish line on May 7 incredibly special.