A Year of FMRMC

Support is a beautiful thing and it comes in all shapes and sizes.  Last May in an effort to train for the half-marathon, lose weight (hopefully) and get healthy, I joined a group called The Fatty Must Run Marathon Challenge, or more affectionately called FMRMC.  The group was the brain child of Julie Creffield from London (yes, the group had a wonderful international flavor).  Some would be offended by the title, but it was actually quite fun.  A happy group of women with sparkling humor, united for a common goal.

Over sixty women applied for the opportunity and fifteen of us were chosen to join this fledgling group offering support and sharing best practices, as we each pledged to complete a marathon within 12 months – or in my case, a half-marathon.  A closed Facebook group was formed and even our Twitter handle became the famous #FMRMC.

We went through a lot as a group.  Each month presented a new challenge – 30 days of planking, a month of clean eating; all in an effort to not only train for our respective races, but to also develop healthier habits.  Each month, I found myself actually looking forward to the next newsletter to start a new challenge!

The year has flown by. Unfortunately we lost some members along the way, mostly from injuries.  We gained new members and fully embraced them as partners in our quest.  As I look back over the year, I’m pretty proud of what I accomplished. I ran races; I completed a half-marathon and managed to change some of my habits and incorporate new ones.  I’ve even started to enjoy more veggies – who knew!

The year will be over in a couple of weeks and it’s been a ride.  I have been so honored to be a part of the program.  For the ladies of the FMRMC, I thank you for the time we spent “together”, spread out all over the world, but united in a single goal. GO FMRMC!

Size doesn’t matter! Check out Julie’s Blog!
http://thefatgirlsguidetorunning.com/

The Race Volunteer Black Hole

ImageI love races – the sense of accomplishment, meeting new people…so much fun!  I also love the volunteers who donate their time to cheer and assist the millions of runners, in the millions of races. How many times were you almost at that point when you were about ready to give up and then you saw a big smile, heard a hearty handclap and exciting cheer to keep going?

Where do those awesome volunteers come from? How do they get picked? I don’t know, maybe it’s me. I’ve signed up to volunteer for at least five races. I visited their website, filled in the requested information, hit submit and then patiently waited…and waited…and waited. I don’t want to name races, because even though no one contacted me, I’m not trying to bash any of the events. I’m also trying not to take it personally, but when you offer to volunteer your time and no one seems interested, it’s hard not to get that “what’s wrong with me” feeling.

Where do the applications go? I know many job seekers often complain of the “black hole” phenomenon. It’s sad when it happens in the volunteer world too. I remember a 5K/10K race last year. There were hardly any volunteers, despite the many pleas for help they sent out. The race was so short-staffed, in fact, there was no one at the one water table so we had to stop and pour warm water out of jugs. Nor was there anyone to help direct us through a confusing course. The lack of volunteers was so bad, people who had signed up to run the 10K, actually stopped running at the 5!

I know that race planners have a difficult time.  There are probably many volunteers who don’t bother to show up for whatever reason. I, however, would love to volunteer at a race. I guess I’ll figure it out one day…haven’t been able to yet, but I’m confident one day the mystery of becoming a race volunteer will unlock for me. Until then many, many thanks to the millions of volunteers who help make every race…magical.

Tuesday 2.02 Run

Have you ever had one of those days when you just didn’t feel like going out the door? Of course, no one has EVER had one of those days….right? Even though we may struggle with momentary motivation, sometimes we have to find the fun. We need to create that one thing that will get us out the door with our eyes on the prize. But how? I decided to name my run, at least for today!

Welcome to 2.02 Tuesday. I truly fought with myself today. Gym, track, or stay home? After taking a Zumba class last night for the first time in about two months, the temptation to stay home was great, but I had to keep the training momentum going. Got dressed and headed out the door – stay home, dashed. Track or treadmill? Did I really feel like going to the gym to play “push the buttons” on the treadmill to alter my running speed?  (Ha, I do use the word “speed” loosely) Treadmill – dashed. I headed to the school track – just to see how many people would be there.

It seems that a school track is the place to be on weeknight.  Runners, walkers, singles, families…all gather and turn a quiet track into a great place for motivation.  One lap, two lap….it was starting to feel really good.  Suddenly the dreaded training actually became fun.  I set a goal in mind. Don’t get me wrong, I do love running, but I still had to get back home to cook dinner, I set a goal to go 2.02 miles.  A goal that I couldn’t even visualize just 15 minutes before was fast becoming a reality. I will tell you, however, that I stopped abruptly when I hit 2.02…not because I was tired or that I couldn’t keep going – but the purpose of today was to set a fun goal and hit it.  Now that I have proven I can do that, tomorrow I’ll set a new one. The only problem is that I have to find a catchy title that goes with “Wednesday.”  Gotta love the run.