Goodness . . . it’s been a LONG time since my last post.  And while I’ve missed jotting down my musings here, there’s been a few things going on . . . like a little kitchen renovation project . . .

and gardening season . .

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which, after several days of planting, is turning into this:

and of course all the end of year, planning for next year, stuff of life that happens when you have kids.

But as crazy as the past month has been, in those quiet moments, when I’m driving to an from schools, or design stores, or I’m speed planting flowers in my garden, my thoughts keep returning to the #runDisney event I did four weeks ago.

Those that know me, know that I love to be active.  I’ve joyfully participated in crossfit of some form or another for years now.  I faithfully train with the Coach a few times a week.  And it’s rare for a day to go by without me finding my way into the gym.  But I have NEVER, EVER considered myself a runner.  The fact that my running “form” has been compared to both a bunny rabbit and a kangaroo perhaps offers a clue as to why I’ve never been a natural at running.  Although, quite frankly, running was always the one form of physical activity that I just could never find the mental fortitude needed to see my way through a run that lasted any longer than about 20 minutes.

But something changed this fall.

Over the summer, I had gradually, unconsciously, built up my ability to run.  With just a kettle bell, a skipping rope a yoga mat, and dirt roads at the cottage, short running intervals played a large part in my daily workouts – if only to break up the monotony of burpees and skipping.

Then my son signed up for the cross country team at school, and was able to earn “bonus miles” for runs he did at home. We started doing short runs together, working up to 5k, earning some virtual Harry Potter run medals in the process, and culminating in finishing the 5k portion of the Toronto Waterfront Marathon.  Those runs I did with my son taught me a lot – the gentle encouragement and support I offered him as he worked his way through our runs made me realize how I talk myself through a workout – let’s just say my self-talk sounds distinctly different, and I wanted to work on changing that.

During those first few weeks of September, while the Husband was starting to question what I would like to do for my 40th birthday, something, I wish I could remember what it was, runDisney and Tinkerbell-run related arrived in my in-box.  Our annual trip to DisneyWorld often coincides with the Wine and Dine Half Marathon weekend – hearing the runners’ stories, seeing them walk around the parks withe their medals has always intrigued me . . .

And so, I found myself registering for the Tinkerbell 10K.

Before I knew it, race day arrived.  My fears that had built up in the intervening months melted away as the start of the race drew closer.  My fears of being alone (it’s the first time I’ve done any sort of sport without a coach or a teammate) dissipated as I met and chatted with other runners in my corral.  My internal debate as to whether I should run the race to see how fast I could run, or whether I should run the race for fun dissipated with each character photo stop I passed along the way.  And my worries about whether or not I could even run a 10K disappeared as I caught sight of the finish line and the Husband and the kids cheering me on.

When you run Disney, every mile really is magical.  Running alone allowed me to take it all in – to marvel at the ages of some of my fellow runners (and just how fast they could run), to admire those running in costumes, to smile at the parent/child running teams, the husband/wife pairings, or the groups of women running together.  It seemed as though everyone on the course, was happy to be there.  Myself included.

But more than anything, running Disney reminded me that just when you think it’s getting too hard to keep going, when you really just want to stop . . . you round a bend and come across something truly magical – whether it’s another runner that inspires you, the sight of a favourite attraction, the view of the sun rising through the park, or a silly character interaction.  And you’re inspired to keep going, to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

And so . . . now that I’m hooked on running Disney,  I’ve already signed up for my next runDisney race . . . the Princess Half Marathon.  I’m also looking to find a way to justify going back to do the Tinkerbell 10K again next year too . . . (but don’t tell the Husband that).

In the meantime, I will actually work on my running technique – hopefully by February, I’ll look like I actually ran the race . . . not bounced my way through it!