I’ve never considered myself to be a runner. In fact, quite the opposite. When my husband ran the SF Marathon last year I was in awe of him and said out aloud, ‘I have absolutely no desire to ever do that!’ Until…I got a call from my one of my best college friends (who lives in Southern California) declaring that running the Healdsburg Half Marathon was on her bucket list and she wanted me to do it with her. At first I just laughed and said I’d think about it, not imagining I would do it. I emailed a few local friends that my friend Jamie was trying to wrangle me in to do this and, to my surprise, four SF friends said they were in! So now I was in.

The good news was that I didn’t have to actually do anything until August. Jamie assured me that I didn’t have to start training until then for the Oct. 25th race, so I paid my money and put it in the back of my mind with other things I had to worry about at a later date. I had just started an intensive cardio routine five days a week, so I figured that would help me and then I made my husband take me out for my first run sometime in the Spring. I barely made it a mile and my knee was a mess. I tried not to let that get me down and tried again a few weeks later. Not great, but better and the knee wasn’t perfect but ok.

Fast forward to June and I took advantage of a beautiful running path on our annual trip to Maui and ran a few more times. Making progress! Once August hit, so did reality. Time to get serious. So two of my SF friends who had signed up and I, decided to start running…regularly.

SF Marathon startNow this coincided with my son starting kindergarten so our runs happened at 5:30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays and then one weekend day. At first the early morning wake up was fairly brutal, but it started getting easier and so did the runs.

We ran about 3 miles on each of our weekday runs and started adding mileage on the weekends. What I realized I enjoyed most was the time I had with my two running buddies to just talk and enjoy some quality adult time. I used to be so good about making time to talk to my friends but once life (and let’s face it, kids) get a hold of you, that becomes more of a challenge.

SF Marathon in rainWe made it to race day and as luck would have it, it was the first rainy day of the season. I know we are in a drought but I was holding out hope until the very last minute that it really wouldn’t rain, but it did. It rained a lot. We started our journey in trash bags, but ditched those after the first few miles and just embraced the wet.

I can’t say it was a perfect race, that knee that plagued me on my very first run decide to make a special appearance on the marathon day, but I finished and that is all that matters!

The journey to get there was really the accomplishment, especially for a self-pronounced non-runner.

Editor’s note: Congratulations to Nicole for making it to both the start and finish lines! And for living the W2O Group’s cultural value #MakeItHappen