Sunday, November 18, 2012


The number 10 has much significance for me this year.  October marked my 10th half marathon.  This fall, my class celebrated its' 10 year class reunion and it's been 10 years since I started running.  

My class reunion brought back great memories with my classmates.  We picked up with stories just like we'd seen each other every day for the last 10 years.  It was a bit of a bummer that I couldn't enjoy all the wine and beverages, but baby Tobs is worth it.  It was great catching up and seeing how everyone has changed through the years.  Kids, marriages, living in different states, and some still living in Pawnee.  But all in all it was great to see where life had taken everyone.  Some things never change...

Boys looking at scrapbooks and yearbooks

Two of my best friends...then and now!

The class!

Twins!  Matt, Morgan, Andrew, and Megan

The girls - Morgan, Katie, Megan, and Me

Katie, Abby and Me



Ironically, since it's been 10 years since I graduated high school, it's also been 10 years since I first went to college and began running.  I will never forget one of my first mornings in Taylor Hall at EIU, my brother calling me, asking if I wanted to go to the Rec to workout.  Um, I didn't really workout other than my volleyball season, 1 year ago, but why not?  I remember going and immediately getting hooked.  Nevermind that I didn't know what I was doing.  But that fall, I distinctly recall the day that I ran for 25 straight minutes on the treadmill.  It was barely over 2 miles, but I didn't care.  I wanted to tell everyone.  Thankfully I didn't, but thus began my bug for running.  Which leads me to my 10th half marathon....

About 5 years ago, half way through my running career so far, I decided I should try for a half marathon.  I had ran several 5ks, and one 5 miler and I was ready for the challenge.  Since then, I've ran 10.  Even I'm surprised by it.  I used to be able to recall each goal for every one, but now with so many, it is getting harder.  I used to read stories of runners who had run so many halfs that they lost track.  Um, how do you lose track??  Well, I'm almost to that point.  Luckily, I'm keeping track of them so I don't forget!  My goals have been different for each one and I've had different times each race, but the fact remains that I am a runner and I can't wait to do 10 more!  And maybe I'll throw in another marathon, if I ever get crazy enough.  Here's a recap on my 10 Half Marathons, times, and goals for each....

#1.  5/5/2007 – Indy Mini Marathon – 2:11.32  
        **My first half and my goal was to run (not even stop for water or GU) the entire thing.  I did it, slowly and that was stupid to do. Indy is a great, flat course.  It is the largest half marathon in the US with 35,000 runners.  You even get to run on the speedway!  Kiss the Bricks!

#2.  5/3/2008 – Indy Mini Marathon – 2:00.31
        **My goal this race was to beat my previous time.  I busted 11 minutes.  And even walked during it...haha

10/12/2008 – Chicago Marathon, Chicago, IL – 4:55.24
        Okay so this doesn't count, but I freaking ran a marathon and it needed to be put on here!

#3.  4/11/2009- Illinois Half Marathon, Champaign, IL – 1:59.16
        **This was my only half where no one from my family could be at because my dad was sick with cancer during that time.  My goal was to beat my 2 hour time from last time and I pretty much thought that if I could do that, God would heal my dad.  Do you ever try to bargain with God?!  Yeah, I was crazy.  It was an emotional run, and honestly, Dad was healed.  Great run, finishing on 50 yard line of Memorial Stadium is pretty sweet

#4.  4/11/2010 – Go! St. Louis Half Marathon – St. Louis, MO – 2:14.58
       **I ran this race with my sister-in-law and it was her first half.  My goal was to finish with her and we both raised money for The American Cancer Society.  It felt great to give back to others affected by dad's disease.  I definitely felt his presence that day.

#5.  4/2/2011 – Lincoln Presidential Half Marathon, Springfield, IL – 1:55.40  PR
       **I ran this race and raised money for Kailey Wilmarth, my volleyball coach's 8th grade daughter who was battling Leukemia.  With the help of her family and friends, we raised $2,000 for Kailey's Krew.  And I PR'd!  My "personal record" was 4 minutes faster than previous PR in Champaign which was tough enough.  Springfield is hilly so I was really proud.  I did it for Kailey and for Dad.  Kailey lost her battle that May, but I think of her often and her family.

#6.  5/7/2011 – Indy Mini Marathon – 1:53.15 PR
       **I ran my 2nd half last year just one month after I PR'd.  I was nervous but my goal was just to complete 2 in one month.  Well, I beat my best time, yet again.   Ryan and Nancy ran this one too and did awesome.  It was great to have Nathan there to see me finish and beat my time.

#7.  10/23/2011 – St. Louis Rock and Roll Half Marathon – 2:02.59 – 9:23 pace
      **This was my 3rd this year and I had suffered a back injury just 6 weeks before the race, so again, it was to finish with a decent time.  I was very proud of my time and looked forward to running it again.
#8.  4/7/2012 – Lincoln Presidential Half Marathon – 1:50.34 PR – 8:26 pace 
      **My second time running the Springfield race.  I signed up because I knew the course and I wanted to run 2 in 1 week.  Again, crazy.  Well, I beat my time again!  I was so proud of myself on such a hilly, tough course.  Did you see my pace?!  I must have been flying.  So since I started my first half, I have shaved off 21 minutes off of my time.  That's insane.

#9.  4/15/12 – Go! St. Louis Half Marathon – 2:13.29 
      **I ran this race one week after I PR'd so I was just hoping to finish.  I also ran this with my friend Caitlin for her first so my goal was to stay with her as well.  I was pleased with the time.

#10.    10/21/12 – St. Louis Rock and Roll Half Marathon - 2:03.29   

       **And just one month ago, I ran my 10th.  My goal was sort of weird for this one.  I got a discount for signing up at the St. Louis Go!  Expo and at the time, Nathan and I knew we were going to try to get pregnant.  So I wondered if I would be in the fall.  That's always been a dream of mine.  To run a half pregnant.  Well, it ended up working out.  I ran my 10th half marathon 18 weeks pregnant and felt tremendous.  Baby Tobin is a champ and I am thankful to still be able to run.  As I was running around mile 9, which was sort of uphill and a battle, I looked around at all the other runners and the crowds cheering people on, and I suddenly became overcome with emotion.  I was running with my child, and the fact that God let me do that just about made me cry.  It was the perfect culmination of my tenure of running.  

Hope you enjoyed the recap and happy running!

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