Despite it already being late March, I ran my first race of 2017 yesterday. Racing in the United NYC Half Marathon was an amazing experience. I mean, come on... closing down major parts of Manhattan so 20,000 runners can race through some of the most iconic streets in the world... Pretty amazing. And while I could dwell on the weeks leading up to this race in which I wore a walking boot for 14 days and vacationed in Disney for 6 days, essentially ending any kind of meaningful training, I would rather talk about this:
My kids had the opportunity to race in Times Square! What a cool event! Hundreds of kids ran side by side with 20,000 half-marathoners on the streets of the Great White Way.
This is what makes all the training, planning, and race anxiety worthwhile. Let's face it. Nobody cares about my race time or where I place in my age group except me. I know that coming to support me in races isn't the most exciting way for my family to spend their time. Jeff, Chase, and Sidni didn't even get to see me run in this race! And honestly, I'm not sure how fun it is to be a spectator for any race that they might see me for a total of 5 seconds! To me, even a measly 5 seconds is so motivating to keep going. I've run races without my family there to support me, and IT SUCKS! But when my racing gives my family an experience or an adventure, that's where the value lies.
We had a great weekend in NYC. We braved the cold, snowy, rainy weather of March, enjoyed a fantastic hotel room view of Times Square, ate really good food, visited some favorite NYC attractions, and the kids saw their first Broadway show, Paramour - A.M.A.Z.I.N.G! I can say with absolute certainty that we wouldn't have planned a weekend trip to NYC in March had it not been for my race. Instead, we would have spent another typical weekend at home, longing for warmer temps and sunnier skies.
There is so much more in a run than start corrals, paces, and finish times. So maybe I didn't run the race I would have liked, and I won't ever win my age group, but what I "win" is so much more gratifying and worthwhile!