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Why I'll never stop running.


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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I had this blog in mind. I wanted to tell you about my weekend. I wanted to tell you about how sore I was/am from the weekend. I wanted to tell you about my date with my husband and I wanted to tell you about how that date came to a shocking end with images of violence and terror being flashed across the t.v. screen in the restaurant. I wanted to tell you so many things. But, I think I'll just tell you about this.

I'll tell you about how every single race I've ever gone to has been a positive and strengthening experience. Not just muscular strength, but emotional strength. I'll tell you about how empowering it is to watch a bunch of people all get together to do something they've been working for and how it feels to accomplish it. How it doesn't matter if it is kids running a 1k or adults of any age running a 5k or a 10k or a half marathon or more. I want to tell you how it feels to watch someone cross an imaginary line or step on a very physical and solid mat and experience that moment of "I did it"!!

It isn't something I can describe well. Go to a race, even if you have never run one step. Go to a race, any race, it doesn't matter if the field of participants is 5,000 or 5, go and watch. Watch the faces and see how accomplishing this thing changes a person's face. It. Is. MAGICAL.

Magical. Magic was sprinkled all over my first 5k, it's what Disney does best, sprinkle pixie dust on something and make it magical. I thought maybe the next one wouldn't be as magical without the pixie dust. I was wrong. The magic doesn't come from pixie dust, it comes from PEOPLE.

From people who thought "I don't know if I can, but I'm going to try." Or, "I've done it already, can I do it better?" The magic comes from the people.

Runners are magic people. They take sweat and turn it into glitter. They take pain and turn it into triumph. They take injury and turn it into personal lessons about overcoming trials and coming back the best they can be. Yeah, runners are magic.

I sat in that restaurant on Monday afternoon with tears in my eyes and tried to explain to my husband why this disaster affected me so much and simply didn't have the words. "It's wrong." "Races are safe." That was about the extent of how I could express myself inside the restaurant on Monday afternoon. 9/11 tore at my heart like nothing ever had. Newtown made me run to school to get my kids and give them a kiss and hug. This one left me temporarily at a loss. Someone tried to steal our magic. Someone tried to kill the unicorn.

As the day wore on and I watched FB and the internet and thought about the evil person who tried to kill the unicorn and succeeded in killing and injuring so many I knew there was only one course of action.

Keep running and all my running friends agreed. The best answer to this bastard was to keep running. We didn't stop. We won't stop. We won't let the unicorn, or Tinkerbell, or any other source of magic die. We will keep running, we will clap until our hands bleed, because pain doesn't stop a runner. It makes us try harder.

We will proudly wear our race shirts and we will run for 2.62 miles, or 4.15 miles or 26.2 minutes or for those who can 26.2 miles. We will raise money, like we do for so many other charities and during other moments of crisis. We will band together and run. I WILL keep running. I WILL keep going to organized races and all of us will be more vigilant and more helpful and more aware and we WILL race and finish and go on. Runners do not quit and I will not quit.

I am PROUD to call myself a runner on this day after. I am PROUD to belong to this group of people with strong hearts. I am PROUD to be a part of a country that is always able to stop the petty bickering and band together as a family when we are injured.

I am a runner and I will not stop running. Despite being sore and having shin splints I put in the distance this morning. I ran some, walked a lot and then raced as far as I could with the thought that this section was for "them". For the innocent who were there to support the magic. For those who create the magic and those who suffered the ultimate loss. It wasn't much. It wasn't a marathon, but it was my effort at sending a little magic to help heal the unicorn. I think it did more to heal me, but magic works like that sometimes.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
ROBB1N 4/18/2013 10:22AM

    The best revenge against a cowardly terrorist is living well afterward.

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LINDAK25 4/18/2013 10:21AM

    emoticon emoticon

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BLESSED2BEME 4/18/2013 10:17AM

    I needed to read this so badly today. Thank you. I've felt the same way. I keep asking myself why the Boston event rocked my core so much more than 9/11 or any of the other horrific experiences that have happened. All of them make me sad and angry but Boston has affected me so much. I too am proud to call myself a Runner now and will continue to run for the causes that I am so passionate about. I pray that someday my heart will feel whole again though.

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NEPTUNE1939 4/18/2013 10:14AM

    emoticon

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IAMAGEMLOVER 4/18/2013 10:06AM

    I don't run because of OA in my knees, bone on bone, I walk. I hope they find the creep(s) who did the bombings. I don't understand what is happening in our world today. Keep running, don't let them win. emoticon blog.

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LEWILL1982 4/18/2013 10:01AM

    Exactly, on point! You gave me chills, exactly what I've been trying to express or work through myself this week...

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PENNYPACKER3 4/18/2013 9:53AM

    emoticon

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WORKNPROGRESS49 4/18/2013 9:30AM

    emoticon

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CJYOUCANDOIT 4/18/2013 9:25AM

    Thank you for sharing from your heart. emoticon

Whoever is trying to terrorize us this time will be brought to justice. Anyone who runs should keep running. Don't let them destroy what we have. Don't let them win.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DJSHIP46 4/18/2013 9:21AM

    Thanks for sharing your story :)

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SJKENT1 4/18/2013 8:51AM

    So beautiful. Thank you for sharing your magic with us

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JANEMARIE77 4/18/2013 8:34AM

    emoticon

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ONMYMEDS 4/18/2013 8:27AM

    This is a beautiful blog. Thank you for putting into words, some of the things I feel about running. Well done.

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MOMMY445 4/18/2013 7:56AM

    thanks for sharing such a wonderful blog! have a good day!

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BECKYANNE1 4/18/2013 7:37AM

    Everyone should go and watch a race because I am sure they will see someone like them running that race. They will see all shapes and sizes, all different levels of runners. It's amazing and it feels great to cross that finish line!

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DIANNEMT 4/18/2013 7:33AM

    I have only done 2 5Ks but yes, it is magical and I will keep trying to run for those who can't for awhile....

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SANDYCRANE 4/18/2013 7:20AM

    I watched my son run his first marathon and it was magical. Watching the runners cross the finish line is something I will never forget. I used to run about 30 years ago. Now that I am losing weight and increasing my fitness, I may have to take running up again. Thank you for sharing.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/18/2013 7:18AM

    I'm with you. Our local running store is joining with many others nationwide to sponsor a $20 group run, t-shirt, no distance, just a workout and getting together with other runners. 100% of the funds to go to help the victims of the bombings at the Boston Marathon. Like you, I am resolved more than ever to keep running, and keep doing it in events. Evil CANNOT defeat us, if we don't let it.

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BESSHAILE 4/18/2013 7:08AM

    you go girl

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BLUENOSE63 4/18/2013 7:04AM

  Yep you can knock a runner down but we always get up!

See you on the trails

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SHARIRUN 4/18/2013 6:58AM

  thank you for sharing these thoughts... as a runner who has finished a few marathons I cannot imagine worse things than feeling unsafe at a race- I volunteered at the finish line of NY Marathon in 2011- there were snipers on buildings overlooking the finish and keeping us safe- that was scary, but this is way scarier- someone got in there an planted danger and terror.
I keep running and hope that you will as well

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LIFETIMER54 4/18/2013 6:37AM

  emoticon emoticon

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NEWTINK 4/18/2013 6:29AM

    emoticon

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LUNABYRD 4/18/2013 6:22AM

    You are so right. We can't let the bad guys win. Tragedy should not own us. We MUST keep putting one foot in front of the other so the "magic" will always be there.

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PENOWOK 4/18/2013 6:10AM

    absolutely!

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MARYBETH4884 4/18/2013 6:09AM

    You are soooo right! emoticon emoticon

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TRYINGHARD54 4/18/2013 5:54AM

    emoticon

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MARYJOANNA 4/18/2013 5:50AM

  Never give it up! It is important to you!

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NCSUE0514 4/18/2013 5:29AM

    emoticon

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LRSILVER 4/18/2013 4:54AM

    Thank you. I am a walker. You inspire me.

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MONGO2TEN 4/18/2013 4:22AM

    emoticon

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LIZALOT 4/18/2013 2:41AM

    Well said!
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IDICEM 4/18/2013 1:32AM

  Thanks for the great blog! emoticon emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 4/17/2013 8:31PM

    Great blog! The spirit of runners comes through over and over again through this! Thanks.

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BUTTERFLY-1976 4/17/2013 1:26PM

    Amazing Blog.

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4EVERADONEGIRL 4/17/2013 10:59AM

    Oh my gosh - I LOVE THIS!!!!! I don't think anyone could have said it better. Running IS magic! It is a UNICORN! It is so much and you captured it all.

Thank you!!!!

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MOCOHOLO 4/17/2013 10:47AM

    Beautiful blog!

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GABY1948 4/17/2013 8:41AM

    emoticon emoticon

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CDCSMITH2013 4/17/2013 7:57AM

    So well said.

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BUTTERFLYROSE1 4/17/2013 4:48AM

    Incredibly moving, what you have just written on your Spark blog. I hope many people read this runners, walkers and alike. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RAWCOOKIE 4/17/2013 3:33AM

    Thank you for that powerful statement - I am a beginner runner - went out this morning in the drizzle and ran 12 mins with walks either side - and even I felt a connection to this running family - and was aware that the act of running was connected to all other acts of running. I love that image of chasing the Unicorn!
thank you for expressing this so well
emoticon

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NEW-CAZ 4/17/2013 3:30AM

    Heather you love your running so stick with the magic. I hope they find the sods who did the Boston bombings.
The London Marathon is on this weekend so heightened security, and the runners will wear black ribbons in respect.

Have a great day today emoticon

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SATCHMO99 4/17/2013 2:59AM

    ITS, that was a wonderful blog - so wonderful it made me cry. I agree with everything you say, I too went out for a run to show that the unicorn is alive and kicking.

Your words were so beautifully crafted. Thank you for your pen-power, your determination, and your positivity.

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LYNNWILK2 4/17/2013 2:11AM

    YEAH YOU, you runner who knows the magic of digging deep and pulling up something from somewhere when it feels like everything is gone....
Yeah You for running, for being angry that someone tried to keep the unicorn, that safety that protects you and moves through each of you as you pound the hills, miles of pavement, and park paths.
Yeah You... keep running, keep moving, pronounce the safety there is that protects your might sport and keeps you digging deep and moving quick.
Yeah you!!!!! Keep running.

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BUTEAFULL 4/17/2013 2:10AM

    I hope they catch that bastard

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LOLEMA 4/17/2013 1:38AM

  wISH i COULD RUN BUT I AM A WALKER

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