I turned 40.
Life happened and I faced more challenges than I can recount. I really thought it would be smooth sailing after 40, HA!!! What's that saying about making plans? Yeah that.
If you follow me outside real life and know a little about me then you know I am a runner. I laced up 4 years ago and haven't looked back. I couldn't run 2 blocks when I started then before you know it I was running 5Ks, 10Ks, 15Ks, 10 milers and half marathons and enjoyed it.
Something else happened after entering this new decade. I felt a shift in my mind. I remember the first time I ran and thought there is no way I can run 3 miles but I stuck with it and did!
I ran my first 5K and ran many more. I looked at my run buds and thought they were crazy for wanting to run anything more. Then came the shift, I thought yeah I can run 6 miles. And I did. The more I ran the more my body became acclimated and the more upping the miles didn't feel like Goliath. I got up to 13.1 miles and stayed there. My core sole sisters went further one by one and I cheered them on but I wasn't there yet. I was content on the sidelines.
My first half marathon was in 2014 and considered Atlanta's toughest one. I wasn't afraid because I trained for it. I remember looking at the course map and thinking, "THESE CRAZY PEOPLE RUNNING THE FULL MARATHON ARE RUNNING TO DECATUR!" Not me! Keep your crazy over there.
Last year running 26.2 miles suddenly didn't feel like something only crazy people did. I felt the shift and I signed up. In 3 days I will be running my first marathon!!!! And I am running it with hundreds of my cuzzins from all over the US, Zambia and Quatar. One fierce woman named Heather King had a vision to run the 2017 Publix Marathon in Atlanta with as many African-Americans as she could and a movement was born. Here we are all 425 of us about to make history.
I started training in November, yes girl in the Winter! For 18 weeks I have been training and it hasn't been easy. My focus has been on 1000 and I am proud of myself. Back in 2014 my body was ready but my mind wasn't. All my mind could handle was 13.1 miles. Presently, my mind is ready but girl this body! I'm feeling all 4 decades in these knees! But I haven't quit, I've shown up and proved what I can do.
I'm facing my giant. I am facing 26.2 miles. I am calm.
The little Ndola girl who loved to run fast and won all her track races until around age 9 when her chest developed and the crowd of boys formed at the finish line for a front row view so she put that passion on the shelf.
The young Wife and Mother who devoted her life to her family and lost herself in the shuffle.
The divorced Mother of 2 teenagers who felt them gaining their independence and needed to find something to fill her time because she had seen too many lost empty-nesters and didn't want to be lost in the shuffle again.
I found running.
I found my people.
I haven't looked back since.