I went into REVEL Big Cottonwood thinking it would be some what of the conclusion and peak of my running "story." I didn't plan to run another marathon but to be content with a couple of halves each year for the rest of my life, I guess. I just wanted to say I experienced 26.2 and did it well. To the contrary, after REVEL Big Cottonwood I realized that this amazing course has become just the beginning of so many BIG goals and BIG dreams to be realized in and out of my running shoes, starting a new chapter in the story of my life.
I began running after my third child in 2010. I ran halves and continued to meet the small PR goals I set for myself run after run, race after race. Running became my much needed "mini achievements" refuge and sanity as a mother of 3 kids under 3 1/2. In December of 2012, I had my 4th baby and the following day my eldest 6 year old son was diagnosed with Leukemia. My world was rocked, but running continued to be my constant refuge. My family and I lived in Phoenix at the time and I took advantage of running the trails of the mountain behind my house to escape the heat a little and process my reality.
I signed up for a marathon to run the following winter in my home state of California as a way to take time for me while my son was going through intense treatment and my newborn was, well, a newborn! A couple of months before the race my husband became ill and was hospitalized for a week. I decided to back out and postpone this race to ensure I had enough sleep and energy for my personal health and the well being of our family.
We moved to Utah months later, just last December, and life began to calm down and even out for all of us. I began training for half marathons again and continued to surpass my little goals. I knew I had a chance at qualifying for Boston after a half marathon in July and decided to GO BIG with this marathon so close to my new home.
I am so grateful for the peace and balance, clarity and strength I find in running. Success in running also gives me something else to think and talk about besides cancer and chemotherapy. This REVEL Big Cottonwood Marathon was so organized, it made it effortless to relax and enjoy the grandiose and breathtaking canyon. I am a believer that any goal is possible with focus and heavenly support. Because of this race, I will continue to set running (and triathlon?) goals for myself and will no doubt be reaching some of them right back here on the REVEL Big Cottonwood course! Oh, and yes, I qualified for Boston!