Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014: A Year of Celebration

In January I posted a blog that this year I would seize the day, run faster, and push my own limits. I am happy to declare that I exceeded each of these resolutions in ways that I couldn't have imagined when I wrote them. In a lengthy cocktail-filled brunch earlier this year with dear friends we proclaimed 2014 a year of celebration. In 2014 I ran faster than I ever have, I pushed my own limits, and I fell in love over and over again.

Before writing this blog I started thinking that I hadn't traveled very often this year. It turns out that isn't true. I rang in 2014 in Los Angeles and visited Chicago, Louisville, Washington, DC (four times), Buffalo, Montreal, Quebec City, West Virginia (four times), Atlanta and Norfolk, VA throughout the year.

I got to play a small part in some place based projects for work, and I fell in love repeatedly while doing it. I fell in love with Michigan cities like Marquette (where I traveled three times this year), Holland, Midland and Kalamazoo. I fell in love in ways that were unexpected. I didn't expect to have Marquette and Holland in particular capture my heart. They are small cities located on different great lakes (Superior and Michigan respectively). Their downtowns are vibrant and walkable. Their community vision is infectious. Those cities have made me love Michigan (and winter surprisingly) in ways that I didn't before this year. They reminded me that having a part, even a very small part, of seeing change in a community feeds my soul. I fell in love repeatedly this year, and it was amazing.

I didn't run nearly as much this year as the last few, but I had my fastest times ever. I had a goal of breaking my 26 minute PR in the 5k, and in May I shattered that by running a 23:55 5k. I did it again in November running 24:12 in the Harbor Lights 5k in Norfolk, Virginia.  

I resolved to run faster than 57 minutes in the 10k, and I shattered that PR running 53:26 in October in the Wicked 10k in Plymouth, Michigan. After more than 10 half marathons, I had never broken 2 hours. This year I did it twice running 1:58:59 in April in the Cocoa Classic Half Marathon and 1:58:12 in May in the Kalamazoo Half Marathon. These times weren't just fast for me - they were blistering paces. They all led up to my first triathlon in June, and at 35 I felt the fittest I had in my entire adult life.

July threw a curve ball when a routine abdominal surgery turned into a bowl obstruction requiring another surgery. I then developed a blood clot. I spent the better part of the month in the hospital and lost nearly 20 pounds. It was not how I planned to spend the summer, but it helped me refocus my attention on what's important to me. Despite the chaos of being in the hospital, I felt oddly relaxed and peaceful. I was reminded to enjoy every chaotic minute of life.

My husband and I moved to Downtown Lansing. Living Downtown is everything I thought it would be and more. It's amazing to walk everywhere, and my heart is full.

2014 was indeed a year of celebration. My resolutions for last year were so great that I think I'll copy them again this year. I'll fall in love, run fast, and push my limits. After all isn't that what makes life great? Here's to a fabulous 2015 my friends!    

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