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Happy November! Can you believe how fast the year is flying? I definitely can’t. It seems like only a few weeks ago that I was nervously heading down to my first half marathon back in May.

By this point I’m wired, excited, nervous, anxious and all sorts of other emotions about my half marathon on Saturday! While I’ve certainly had many moments of feeling down because of my injury, I’m determined to go into this with a positive attitude and full of excitement. Part of that is recognizing so many things that I have to be thankful for on this running journey. So, in honor of thankful Thursday today, I will be focusing on everything that I’m thankful for in my running journey and for this race! You ready?

I’m thankful that I feel a sense of satisfaction with so many of my runs. Seriously, that sense of satisfaction and knowing that you pushed yourself or conquered something is pretty great! That sense of satisfaction can last for days, and I’m thankful for it! It’s definitely a motivating factor! “You have to wonder at times what you’re doing out there. Over the years, I’ve given myself a thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement.” – Steve Prefontaine

I’m thankful that I have the chance to challenge myself through running. I’ll be honest. Running has been a challenge. It’s taken a lot of hard work; i certainly have had to work at it. The challenge makes it so much more rewarding though. Challenging ourselves is healthy for us mentally, and it’s so very satisfying when we meet one of our challenges! “Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” -Joshua J. Marine  “Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go. It helps us to find out what we are made of. This is what we do. This is what it’s all about.” -PattiSue Plumer, U.S. Olympian

I’m thankful for my massage therapist friend who came over and worked on my IT band for free! I’m so lucky to have a friend as a massage therapist. I didn’t even ask her to give me a massage. She was over a few nights ago watching TV and offered out of the goodness of her heart. I’m so grateful and thankful that she was willing to help me out on her day off! What a great friend:)

I’m thankful that I took the chance and started to run. Yes, I know, I really need to get started on typing up my journey to running. I took a risk by lacing up my shoes that first time, and I’m amazed that second run even happened. I’m so happy that I had the courage to try something I had previously hated. It’s been a wild ride so far!  “The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.” -John Bingham, running speaker and writer

I’m thankful that I have such a supportive family who always encourages me in running. When I’m with them they always want to go on a run. I even had a great 8.5 mile run with my brother, which ended up being my longest “long run” for this cycle (oops- stupid IT band injury…). I know that I can call anyone in my immediate family and they will be up for a discussion on running. My dad and brothers have been runners for years and years, and they are a great wealth of knowledge. My mom isn’t a runner, but she’s always there encouraging me and lending a listening ear. I’m so thankful I have encouragement.

I’m thankful that I can sign up for races! I love the excitement of race weekend and the anticipation leading up to it- it’s so fun (and a little nerve-wracking). More than anything though, I appreciate that races keep me motivated for months of training. Races have been huge in my fitness journey, and I’m thankful for them!

I’m thankful for all of your encouragement and advice the last few weeks! This IT band injury has certainly been really frustrating for me to deal with. I don’t like going into a race knowing there’s a chance I won’t be able to do it. I really appreciate your encouragement. Thank you.

Now it’s your turn to share! What are you feeling thankful for today?