Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA
I started running in 2008, at the request of my wife. She loved it, and wanted company. I had just turned 40. It was a struggle, and very difficult to get going. The goals kept increasing as I got more comfortable: 1 mile, 3 miles, then 6 miles. The first two years were on the treadmill, and then I started running outdoors, on a whim. I was hooked, and never looked back! I can now simply not stand the treadmill, and run 100% outdoors.
I ran my first race in April 2010, a 10K, with my wife. We finished together in an hour. I was now officially a runner! I then set the goal for a half marathon the following year. April 2011 I ran my first half marathon, and ran a 1:48. It was awesome, and I was now convinced that I could go farther and faster with more training. When I started running I didn’t have the thought of actually running a marathon; but after that half I started to think about it.
In June of 2012 I ran my second half marathon. I finished in 1:37, and in 96th place. That was the turning point; I finished that race, and then set my mind to run the full marathon the following year at the same event. I devoted a year of my life to training for that race. Very careful preparation, with only one goal in mind…to run a good race. Original goal of 4:00, then 3:45, and right at the start of the taper, I set a goal of 3:30. In June 2013 I ran the marathon in 3:30:18, and finished 96th! That was truly an INCREDIBLE experience, and one of my proudest achievements in life. It is amazing what one can achieve with clear goals, hard work, and dedication.
I am running the same race in June this year, and have been training just as hard. I really have no expectations, and no goal for a time. I am simply enjoying myself; I love to run. It is just that simple. I have already achieved far more than I ever intended to, so for me it just about seeing what my body can handle, and enjoying the “trip.” I used to run with only goals in mind; now I run for the love of running.
I am proud to call myself a runner. I am proud to be part of the running community. I am proud to be a part of Runkeeper.