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My Year In Racing

This is the best way I could think of to sum up my year in racing:

I think this is also my favorite photo!

Lets Review:

Two 5k’s

One 8k

One 10-miler

One duathlon

One relay tri

One sprint tri

Four half-marathons!

I cannot even express the pride I feel when I see that picture.  And when I reflect on all those races, I smile.  It represents the promise I made to myself to get healthy, the road I took to become a better person and the journey that still continues.  It represents more than I could ever put into words.  All the hard work, all the sacrifices…it is all worth it when I see that photo and remember those races.  It means everything ❤

In honor of the end of 2009, I would like to do a quick recap of the year:

  • Favorite races: Broad Street 10-miler, Belmar Triathlon, Philadelphia Distance Run and Baltimore Half-Marathon.
  • Favorite courses: Philadelphia Distance Run and Philadelphia Half-Marathon
  • Favorite medal: Baltimore Half-Marathon
  • Biggest challenges: Delaware Half-Marathon, Philadelphia Woman’s Duathlon and Baltimore Half-Marathon
  • Most proud moments: Finishing my first half-marathon (Delaware) and my sub-30 5k (Run for Tony)

I thought about writing my best and worst experiences, but after some thought, I realized they are all great moments.  Even the worst ones are great ones.  There was not one single race that did not challenge me in some way.

  • During Broad Street, I ran for 3 miles in pouring freezing rain.
  • In Delaware, for my first half-marathon, I ran in freezing hail (in MAY!!) and faced my fears head on when I had to run over a shaky drawbridge.  As an added bonus, mile 12 was all uphill.
  • At the Scott Coffee 8k, I had to overcome missing my goal time by 2 seconds.  It was a tough pill to swallow!
  • I had to face disappointment when, due to weather, the Philadelphia Woman’s Triathlon was turned to a Duathlon.  The swim is my best discipline and I was really uncertain of a duathlon.  But I did it and I liked it.  And, I added duathlete to my resume.
  • At the Belmar Triathlon, I faced my fear of the ocean by swimming in it for 500 meters.  I then had to pull myself together after witnessing a bike accident.  It shook me to my core, as this is also a huge fear of mine, but I was able to focus and finish my own bike portion.
  • I met my goal of a sub-30 PR at the Run for Tony.  This is hands down the highlight of my year in racing.
  • I dealt with ITB set-backs throughout the Philadelphia Distance Run but pushed through and finished with a very respectable time.
  • In Baltimore I took on the crazy hills.  All of them.  And there were a lot of them!  I had fun with the whole race and because of my laid-back approach, it ended up being one of my favorite races even though it was the most difficult.
  • A week after Baltimore, I ran the Delanco 5k…it was pouring, freezing and I did not want to run.  But I got dressed and got my but out there.  It was uncomfortable and not fun at all, but in the end, I was still glad I raced.  Of course, coming out of it with $20 to Dicks and 2 bottles of wine helped 🙂
  • I ran the Philadelphia Half-Marathon despite all my set-backs.  First I had to swallow my pride and drop from the full to the half, then I had to go into the race on very little training due to an extremely difficult semester and then as luck would have it, I got sick the week before the race.  As it turns out, I ran with a double ear infection.  It wasn’t my best race, but I finished.  This race epitomized what it is all about for me.

And lastly, I want to thank each and every person that made this year special for me.  In running, triathlon and in life.  Racing has truly been a blessing in my life.  Some people have embraced this with me and sadly, some haven’t.  I have lost a few friends along the way, but I have gained so many more.  I could not do this without the support of all my friends and family but there are two people who deserve a special shout-out.

  • My Mom- my best friend, my biggest supporter, my cheerleader, my sign-maker, my heart.  There are not enough words to thank you for everything you have done for me, but I will try!  For all the days you took off to watch me race, for all the nights you spent sleeping on my couch, for all the early mornings, for all the times I needed someone to yell at and that someone was you, for the endless encouragement, for always listening about swimming and biking and running, for never ever doubting me, for being at the finish lines, for being on the phone when you couldn’t be at the finish lines, for dealing with heat and the rain and cold, and most of all for always believing in the beauty of my dreams ❤
  • BrianZ- you were there for my first 10-miler and my first half-marathon.  You have run with me in five races- the entire Philly Half at my pace!!!  You never let me get myself down.  You are more than a teammate, and more than a friend…you are my inspiration.  Thank you for believing in me when I did not always.  Thank you for the endless support.  I am not kidding Brian…when I finally get around to that first Marathon…you are my pacer!

And to you all, my bloggies…we may all live in different places and we may all have different lives, but here we all come together.  Whether we swim, bike, run or do all three, this is our common ground.  I am lucky to have you all and I thank you for reading, sharing, and commenting throughout the year.  I know I am meeting some of you for sure, but I hope to meet many of you at some point.

What was your favorite race of 2009?  Proudest Moment?

We are only 3 sleeps away from the New Year and all I have to say to 2010 is BRING. IT. ON. 🙂

I will catch you all on the 2010 side…I’ll be starting the year off with a 5k, a giveaway and my 2010 race schedule!  Stay tuned bloggies, the journey continues!!!

18 thoughts on “My Year In Racing

  1. Thanks for the kind words. Love ya my little tri girl!
    As they say “you’ve come a long way baby”, so glad I could join you for parts of your journey.
    Let me know if you want to start the New Year off with an easy run at the Moorestown Running Co. run on New Years day…just an easy fun run at noon.

  2. What a beautiful post to end 2009 with Jill. It brought tears to my eyes because I read so much pride and joy in your post. Thank you for that!

    You are truly an inspiration to me as it comes to running and I really look forward to following you in 2010 and cheer for you at all the great running adventures you will have.

  3. Girl you are a huge inspiration to us all and I’m so excited to be a part of your running plans next year! You’ve come a long way this year and battled it out through some tough ones. Cheers to 2010 and unyeilding success!!!!

  4. wow, it’s def very cool to see the highs and lows of the year put together like this. obviously with many more highs than lows, and you turned the lows into “made me strongers” anyway 🙂

    congrats on a solid 09, here’s to an even bigger and better 2010!

  5. Happy New Year! Nice to meet another “Jill” on the blog world :). You had an impressive year and you’re right, each race, no matter how you performed, teaches us valuable info. They were all great. I hope 2010 brings you lots of happy, great miles!! I look forward to sharing the road with you.

  6. Nice job on the Blog Jill. My Best wishes for the New Year to you. I had a fun afternoon running with you and to gang from TT and i look froward to more runs in 2010. Have a GREAT YEAR. Dave Harrington (Moejac)

  7. Pingback: 200th Post! Woo-Hoo! « Finishing is Winning

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