Thankful Thursday 12/31/2015 – 2015 highlights

“The days are long, but the years are short” (h/t Gretchen Rubin). Now we’re at the end of yet another year that was challenging in many ways, but still filled with so much to be thankful for.

I’m especially thankful that:

  • I’m still here – whatever the particulars and parameters of my situation, I can and will work to improve my athletic performance and myself – focusing on continuous improvement and defining myself, with relentless positivity and pathological optimism!
  • My DH is still here – after a nasty, scary battle with pneumonia and a long recovery.
  • My sis is still here – after multiple cancers and other medical stuff, my role model and friend is going strong.
  • My various friends are doing reasonably well, despite tough times personally, professionally, and medically for many of them.
  • The technology exists, and is available to me, to help me easily keep in touch with all those who are so dear to me but not near to me.
  • I restarted my daily gratitude list practice – it makes a difference!
  • Every day, every moment, every breath is a chance to choose to be who and how I want to be.
  • I have great tips from Deena and others to help me move toward who I want to be and the life I want.
  • There are so many inspirational people to give me perspective and keep me going.
  • There is beauty, love, joy and kindness to be found in the world, and there are people doing good.
  • I’ve had the opportunity and the ability to help others. I look forward to continuing to do so.
  • I have you, my blog readers and tweeps, only a keystroke away with your support and friendship.

I am deeply thankful and grateful for running. Not just the act of it, a privilege and a gift even on days it’s a challenge, but everything around it and related to it….things I read or listen to, people I meet (electronically or otherwise) or learn about, communities I am or can be a part of, what I learn. It gives me such joy and is a passion for me. It also helps me be a better person and more the me I want to be – I take that into other aspects of my life, which in turn helps me in my running – a virtuous circle or cycle.

Here are some of the running-related highlights of my 2015!

April

2015 Boston Marathon medal

2015 Boston Marathon medal

I got to meet all 3 of my biggest running inspirations and role models, even running with one of them. AND I ran my first Boston Marathon, a dream many years in the making.

  • I got to meet Joan Benoit Samuelson, one of my three running inspirations and running/life role models, at the Cherry Blossom Expo and hear her speak (and also met Bill Rodgers, who was really nice, energetic, enthusiastic, friendly and happy, heard him speak as well)
  • I got to meet and run with (!) Deena, the second of my inspirations and role models (and was lucky to see adn run with Bart again at the same run)
  • I got to meet Meb (my third inspiration and role model) and hearing him speak twice
  • I ran my first Boston Marathon. I still can hardly believe it, but I have the medal and the memories! It was everything people had ever said, and more – here’s my race recap, and related posts about the weekend and recovery

August – I ran Beach to Beacon 10k for the first time (the race started by Joanie in her hometown), and discovered I love Maine! I also got to visit with my sister in one of her favorite places.

Sunrise in Portland, ME

Sunrise in Portland, ME

October – I gutted it out against strained obliques to finish Baystate with a squeaker BQ. I’m proud of my effort and grateful for my health, training and opportunity to race. I met some nice people from the local running group up there and even got to see my sister again.

Baystate Marathon sign

Baystate Marathon sign

November – I stepped out of my comfort zone and ran with a group (in the dark, at 5:30am), and also did a long run on a 1/4 mi track. Over Thanksgiving, I did a virtual race that reminded me to #BeBraveBeThankful and gave me another person to be inspired by, Drea.

Be Brave Be Thankful medal

Be Brave Be Thankful medal

December – I went to the group run again, which that day turned out to be one person…and that one person turned out to be running a race I’ve run. We had lots to talk about, hope we keep getting together. Hard to believe it’s been over a year since my first ultra!

Across The Years

Across The Years

I look forward to making 2016 the best year yet!

As Deena reminds us “Joy is a practice. Our choices build up to be our habits.”

choose joy

choose joy!

Wishing you & yours a great start to a year filled with health, happiness, love, laughter, fun, passion, growth, dreams and goals to pursue, good challenges, and JOY…and of course many good runs!