Tuesday Testimonial

Guest Post:  Jennifer Wilkinson

First of all let me say that although I’m training for my first marathon, I feel like a poser.  A fake.  A trickster.  I find that I cannot utter the words, ‘I am a runner.’  I’m not sure why – I put in the miles, I ‘hydrate’ instead of drink, I ‘fuel’ instead of eat – surely that must mean I’m worthy!    A few people at work have found out I’m training and said, ‘Wow, I didn’t know you’re a runner!’  I usually respond with ‘oh, not really’ or ‘I’m working on it.’ I have no trouble admitting that I am many things: a mother, a wife, a friend, an accountant, a teacher, a beer and wine lover, a shower-singer, a car-dancer and a goof-ball who is also somewhat of an introvert.   I am also fluent in sarcasm and profanity (run a big hill with me to experience this first hand)!

On the heels of a very enjoyable and uplifting 10 mile run and contemplating the 16/17/18 milers coming up in the next few weeks, I find myself reflecting on the WHY of my journey.  I’ve run a couple of long(ish) distance races, but I really can’t say what made me register for my first marathon. I wish I could say raising money for St. Jude was my primary reason, but sadly I’m more selfish than that.  St. Jude IS a top notch facility that is deserving of every penny raised and I do hope I can contribute in some small way.  The reality is that my motivation was a recent milestone birthday and to prove to myself that I’m not dead yet [I don’t want to go on the cart :-)].  I want to feel strong and alive and vibrant. I want to show my young sons (4 1/2 and 8) that Mom is a badass who can run 26.2.  I want to confront the runner in me and tell her that she is tough, that she deserves this and that I will buy her a beer when it’s over!

Although I’m still struggling to identify with my inner athlete (me? an athlete?) I find that since I’ve joined Star Runners this is becoming easier.  I have literally fallen on the ground and had a team member pick me up (thanks, Craig!) and I’ve enjoyed the banter and laughter that have made the miles just fly by.  I may not join the group for all of my runs (did I mention I’m somewhat of an introvert?),  but the group dynamic makes me feel that I’m part of something stronger and more confident than just a solitary person who is still struggling with understanding WHY this marathon feels so important and personal. I believe the answer lies in the many miles I have yet to run, but I do believe I will find it.  And I will love every sweaty, exhausting minute of it.

Many thanks to Star, Keith and all Star Runners for helping me recognize myself as a runner, mile-by-mile and step-by-step.

One thought on “Tuesday Testimonial

  1. Pingback: YES, I am a runner | starrunnersmemphis

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