This is the question I have been asked by numerous people who knew me before I started running.

My answer…

To LIVE! That is why. I’ve made a major change in my life, and I owe it to running. I remember sitting on the couch a few weeks before the Carlsbad 5000 talking to my brother-in-law. He was asking me to do the 5000. I said, ‘I CAN’T RUN THAT FAR! ARE YOU CRAZY?!’ He said, ‘You don’t have to run, you can walk it.’ I said, ‘What is wrong with ‘YOU PEOPLE’? Running jams your joints and joggles your organs all around!!’ (Of course, I had the awesome charades to go along with it all) 🙂

I remember standing in church and thinking to myself..’NO, I’m not going to walk that race! I’m gonna run it!’ I decided I was going to start with a mile. So, that night I measured a mile with my car (how ghetto..hehe now that I have GPS watch) So the next day, I woke up at 6:35am, took a deep breath, and headed out. I got two freaking blocks before my calves were screaming ‘Lord Jesus please help us! Make her stop!’ But I am not quitter. I ran the mile in 12 minutes. Could barely breath, but I DID IT!!

The next morning, I got up at 6:35am again. This time I took a little bottle of water with me. I did the same mile, but in 10 minutes. I DID IT AGAIN! Hot damn! I’m good! LOL (These two days I was running at my sister-in-law’s. I was staying there with my son during his spring break, so he had somene to play with)

The next morning I was home in good ol’ hilly Alpine.Of course, I had to bust out Emily (my car) and measure out another mile. This time I woke up at 6:30am. (Holy cow! 5 minutes earlier. That is awesome! You go girl! LOL) My time was 9 minutes! I DID IT AGAIN! But I got a punch to the emotional gut when I went to tell a bunch of my friends all about it. They said, that’s good. But it’s ONLY a MILE! WHOA! Are you serious? I haven’t ran in 14 years..I just ran a mile in 3 different days and shaved off minutes each day, and you are not impressed. LOL IT WAS ON!!!!!

I’ve been adding distance and shaving minutes every since. I don’t care what anyone else thinks. I’M the RUNNER! I’M the ATHLETE I want to be!

I’m learning DISCIPLINE. I’m the type of person, that will push myself until my legs fall off. I hurt myself about 4 days after the above and I was not able to RUN my first 5k. I was really really really bummed out. But I’ll be dang if I wasn’t going to WALK it. That didn’t help either. Took about a week and a half to recover. Got the RIGHT shoes! (Actually have 2 of the same pair, just different colors) WOW that is important.

I’ve even been reading books. Hmmm, Darla? Read?! Yep, I did. I’m on my 3rd one. I only take what I want from the book though. Mostly the motivational stuff. I’ve tried a look at the training plans and they don’t work for me. I know I’m new to this and all, I must be doing something right or I wouldn’t be increasing so quickly.

Improved on my nutrition too. I now am trying this ‘whatever’. I drink a chocolate/banana protein shake in the morning for breakfast (this is hard too, cuz I don’t eat breakfast). Then I take 2 bananas, 2 (oranges, nectarines, plums, peaches), and a turkey and cheese sandwich to work. I eat ALL day. Normally every couple of hours. Seems to be going ok. I just need to exercise sit-ups or my son’s Turbo Jam. LOL Not just running. Still got some chubs in certain areas. Like when I wave, so does the flab under my tricep. LMAO!