Several months ago in the dead of the Florida summer heat and humidity, a long-time girlfriend and I reconnected and began a weekly running routine, which at that time was just once a week for me. While I had to make time at the butt crack of dawn for my runs and she is a self-proclaimed non-morning person, we made a standing appointment to meet on Wednesday mornings for our partner runs. While I was working the rest of the week on my cycling and weight training workouts, she continued on her quest to train for her first half marathon, which she is still training for. She is working towards the Run for the Bay Half Marathon in Apalachicola, FL on Sunday October 21st.
Given that I had trained pretty hard and through a summer a couple of years ago for a 5k (nothing compared to her half) I had stopped running for one reason or the other, but I missed it. I missed the rush it gave me and the huge sense of accomplishment, but I hated running alone all the time. My husband, being one of my biggest supporters has had double knee scopes and cannot run any longer, but is an avid mountain bike rider. So when my girlfriend invited me to join her Tallahassee Chapter of Mom’s Run This Town (MRTT) I was excited to get involved.
Mom’s Run This Town is a nationwide FREE running club for Moms. Walkers, joggers and pet-moms are welcome to join. I, having no children of my own, was invited because I am stepmom to two stepsons and I was totally honored to be invited to join and especially excited to reconnect with my friend and do something to support each other.
Since reconnecting, we have participated in a 5K together which was this past Labor Day and look forward to the upcoming Born to Run Tallahassee 5K in addition to the Run for Lawson and my special run on December 1st for the Jingle Bell Run for Arthritis Foundation in Ft. Walton Beach, FL which she has convinced me to turn the corner and leave the 5K’s behind and push forward to the 10K challenge.
With the Florida weather changing and temperatures getting cooler, we decided to take our first evening run (for me) this year last night and to take a route that we do not normally travel. This route took us to almost 6 miles, my longest run yet. There were hills, there were times of mental anguish telling me to stop and there were times that we took a rest. Pushing through to finish and a little surprise that I actually overcame a large distance that previously I stopped and walked.
What got me through? My running partner, she’s really a humble amazing person with so much on her plate, but she always finds time to be happy and positive. She sees me struggle and talks me through it. We carry on conversation throughout our runs to keep our minds off how far we have gone or have far we have left to go. She coaches me through technique for hills and striking for flat roads. She truly is the reason I have reconnected with my passion for running. Eating for fuel and hydration during the day for nights we will run is becoming my focus. Researching equipment to help me stay hydrated and comfortable during my runs is imperative, but she also does research and shares it with me.
So this post is to give a special thank you to my running partner, Tammy Poucher, who has given me the strong will and desire to find my inner runner again and to get out there and push myself. Truly, without a strong support in your running world, self-doubt and mental breakdown will hold you back.
If you find yourself in the same place that I was in and you need a little motivation on your journey to get yourself healthy, reach out and get started. Whether you are running, walking or biking you are moving, so just get out there. A better you is just waiting for you to make the first move.