Without sounding totally cheesy, finishing this half-marathon was one of my prouder moments in life. Not that I haven’t done cool things – I’m a surgeon with 3 kids – but this was something that didn’t rely on intelligence or special God-given gifts. I finished a half-marathon through hard work and determination. I felt (and continue to feel) that what makes finishing a big race so amazing is that, even though most people in the world *could* run a race, most don’t.
I think I would still be wearing my Donald Duck medal if I thought I could get away with it. But the wonderful thing about a Disney race is that I DID get to wear my medal for the rest of the trip. And I certainly wasn’t the only one wearing a medal.

This is race day but I wore the medal on Sunday and Monday. I even wore it on the plane ride home Monday night. (And, for the record, there were several other people on the plane wearing medals.)

By Sunday afternoon the Full Marathoners started showing up at the parks with their medals.  Finishing the full marathon gets you a Mickey medal.  As cool as my Donald medal is, I knew right then and there that I NEEDED a Mickey medal.  And thus began my crazy marathon training plans.  Only it gets worse.  There are these crazy people out there who finish the half marathon on Saturday (13.1 miles) and the full marathon on Sunday (26.2) for a total of 39.3 miles.  There is only one word to describe these people: Goofy.  And, yes, they get a Goofy medal.  Even better, they get 3 medals – Donald, Mickey, and Goofy.  I now have a new Bucket List item:  finish the Goofy.

I can’t explain how inspired I was by all of the activities during Marathon weekend.  Upon returning to my awful New York winter, I knew I needed to sign up for another race.  I chose the More Magazine Women’s Half Marathon in Central Park.  For the curious, I picked this race for a few simple reasons.  #1:  The race took place on a Sunday and my children have fewer Sunday activities so it wouldn’t be a hardship on my family.  #2: We live in the suburbs of NYC so it would be easy to get there.  #3: It seemed like it was the right amount of time to get my training going.

The benefit of my new-found love of racing – or at least my new-found love of being handed a medal at the end of the race (it’s all about the bling!) – is that I was much more motivated to train this time around.  Race day was a lovely spring day in NYC (a miracle given our terrible winter).  I shaved over 30 seconds per mile off my time, despite some impressive hills in Central Park.  It was a really fun race and one that I will likely do again!

With 2 medals under my belt (or around my neck), I thought I’d be ready to start my marathon training for January, 2012.  I signed up for an October 1/2 marathon (the Westchester Medical Center Half Marathon – close to home and on a Sunday!).  And I paid my $$$ for the Disney Full Marathon which takes place in January, 2012.  I found that my next races were too far out and I lost my motivation.  (I’m too chicken to run a summer race.) I joined a free women’s running clinic at our local running store (major props to Westchester Road Runners Store for doing this clinic!) but found that most weeks my Monday night group run has been my only run.

According to the Jeff Galloway training plan on RunDisney, I’m supposed to start my Marathon Training today.  I need accountability.  I need motivation.  So here is my true, and purely selfish, reason for starting this blog.  I will try to keep track of my training (and my DH is training for his first half marathon with me as his “experienced” coach) as a way of forcing me to train.  Three runs a week:  2 midweek runs of 30-45 minutes and 1 weekend long run.  I posted the training plan on the wall by my computer where I have to cross off training days as they happen.

My short-term goals are to finish the October 1/2 marathon – I’m not really running for time but more as part of my marathon training – and finish the January full marathon.  My long-term goal is to finish the Goofy in 2013.  Welcome to my madness!