Guest Post Series- The Many Faces of Running- Jen

Hi peeps!  I hope y’all are doing well on this wonderful Wednesday.  I am stoked because I just finished the last of four presentations, woohoo!  Now I am off to explore Lake Placid 🙂  I do miss blogging and reading/commenting on all of your blogs- my reader is out of control.  I will be back with bells on this weekend to report on my 11 miler (awesome), my 10 miler (that I haven’t run yet), a 5k recap and oh yeah, a recap of the wardrobe challenge.  I “met” a cool blogger that is also embarking on a wardrobe challenge of her own so I will be giving her a shout out as well! 

For now, I am very happy and honored to introduce you to Jen, a local blogger that I first connected with on dailymile and then had the pleasure of meeting in person!  We had an awesome running date and she is such a sweetheart, not to mention incredibly inspiring.  She is running her first half with me (well not with me but you know) on the tenth too!  Woohoo!  Here is Jen 🙂

My name is Jen and I blog over at http://jenisgreen.com, where I write about my life in healthy food and fitness. Thanks to Katie for allowing me to write a guest post for her Many Faces of Running Series. I’m honored! 🙂
 
Let me first say that I wasn’t always a runner. In fact, for the majority of my life, I wasn’t athletic at all. I dreaded “the mile” in gym class and almost always came in dead last. I didn’t have an athletic bone in my body, and I never thought I would.
 
And then, two years ago, something changed. I wanted to get in shape. I was overweight and tired of it. I wanted to work exercise into my daily routine. One day I decided to try running a bit during one of my walks…and I could just run a half a mile without stopping. I figured running would be the quickest way to burn calories and get me toward my goal of losing weight faster. It did! Slowly I made it to running three miles without stopping, and with that, a weight loss of 80 pounds!
 
But, I wanted more! I needed a fitness goal. I signed up for a 5K: The Freihofer’s Run for Women, in Albany, NY in May of 2009. My goal for this race was to run, without stopping, the whole time; to finish! That was it! I was so nervous about it, I hoped that I could complete my goal. Without ever stopping to walk, I finished the race in 37 minutes. I felt incredible. I felt like I had found my place, like I’d discovered my passion. Words can’t even really describe the feeling I had–I had come from being 80 pounds overweight and unathletic, to a person who successfully completed running a 3.1 mile race! I cried at the finish line, I was so  proud of myself. I had never felt this feeling before. It was so strange to me! And now I wanted more-more races and longer distance. I had been bitten by the racing bug!
 
Throughout the year I kept running, trying to improve my 5K time, and increasing my distance. In March of 2010, I ran five miles for the first time. Again, I felt another great sense of accomplishment. I thought to myself, once I can run five, I can keep going! I ran the 2010 Freihofer’s 5K this year, and finished in 27:18, shaving 10 minutes off of last year’s time. I felt awesome.
 

Since then, I’ve ran two other 5Ks, two 10Ks, and this summer, trained for and ran a 15K, where I finished in 1 hour and 39 minutes. I’m currently training for my first half marathon, which takes place on October 10, 2010. Finishing a half marathon will be my ultimate accomplishment, and I know I can do it. And I can’t wait!

For me, running has become more than just a way to burn calories. It helps me relieve stress, and allows me to feel a sense of accomplishment whenever I finish a run or race. I can always push myself farther and set new goals for myself. It teaches me more about myself every day and I believe because of it, I’m a better person. I’m more healthier and happier than I’ve ever been in my life. 🙂

—-

Jen, you are seriously amazing!  I can’t wait for you to cross the finish line of your first half-marathon.  You are super fast so I’ll probably be crossing a few minutes after you 😉  Thank you for sharing your story!

Have a great Wednesday friends!

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6 Comments

Filed under Running, The Many Faces of Running

6 responses to “Guest Post Series- The Many Faces of Running- Jen

  1. lowandbhold

    Running is more than calorie burn for me too now. In fact I don’t even think of it as exercise anymore and I love it. Great story!

    Have fun at Lake Placid!

  2. Great story and so impressive! I agree that running is not about burning calories – it’s my dose of sanity.

  3. Julie

    Hi Katie,
    I think it is wonderful that you met a local blogger and that you are running a half marathon together! Great post!

  4. I agree with Julie, it’s fun to have a running partner!

  5. This series is great, Katie, and Jen’s story was a good read.

    Looking forward to your return to the blogworld!

  6. Nicki

    Thanks for this series, Katie. Jen – it is great seeing you here!!

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