euphoria of agony

February 12, 2008 at 3:47 pm 6 comments

i didn’t feel ready. i wanted to turn and run … the other way. could i slip out unnoticed or would it be obvious if i was running one direction while 4,000 other runners ran in another. as i searched for my escape route i caught h’s eye and instantly i knew i had to go through with it. she wanted nothing more than to be a number in the crowd. part of this run was for her. without her i never would have been there. and i knew this was my chance to remind her of the passion for the run. to reawaken in her what she had come to fear.

i never even heard the start. but suddenly we were moving. walking slowly at first. feet shuffling in a slow attempt to break free from the mass of bodies. and then i was running. there was no turning back.

the first six miles were beautiful. the darkness of the early morning hour and the beauty of the quaint neighborhood streets of davis islands easily allowed me to get lost in the rhythm of my feet on the pavement. i had worried about starting before sunrise. unsure of maneuvering sidewalk cracks and the occasional old cobblestone street. but i quickly found solace in the cool darkness.

roughly midpoint the course took us through what would ultimately be the finish and the crowd was wild with enthusiasm. i felt the rush and then realized the cheers were for the winner. here i was barely half way through watching him break through the yellow ribbon. i could have been crushed but then i saw h and heard her screaming my name. a high five as i ran by and my head and heart were back in it.

it was mile 10 where i first felt the decline. it came on faster than i expected. one minute i was fine, the next i was exhausted. but the meticulous planning of my play-list, the hours of analyzing song order, proved worthwhile.

look, if you only had one shot, or one opportunity to seize everything you ever wanted — one moment — would you capture it or just let it slip.

the right beat. the right words.  i would capture it. i felt the familiar rush of euphoria. the high. the intense desire to succeed.

you better lose yourself in the music, the moment you own it, you better never let it go. you only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow this opportunity comes once in a lifetime.

there was still strength left in me though i knew it was fading. i had to grasp hold of it at that moment and somehow find a way to let it carry me further. each step became harder to take. fire tore through my legs and i had to will myself to keep moving forward. i prayed that at mile 12 i would find the downhill excitement of the nearing end but as i crossed that marker nothing changed.

my body numbed to the pain. my legs moving merely out of muscle recognition and the last remaining ounce of stubbornness i held onto. i do not quit! what should have been the final song, the one that fell within my dream goal, came and went. and then another. the “just in case” songs. the finish line came into view materializing slowly in the haze of my thin grasp on reality. like an oasis mirage in a dry desert beckoning to the thirsty. i waited for the comfort of knowing i was that close. the relief that the end was in sight. but there was nothing there. i was sure each step was my last and i honestly didn’t think i was going to make it until that final footfall across the line. a personal irony to the song playing as i did. john mayer reminding me.

when you’re dreaming with a broken heart, the waking up is the hardest part.

it took only a split second for the bitter chill to hit. from the inside out i went from hot and sweaty to shivering and i was immensely thankful for the volunteer that covered me in the silver foil wrap. my eyes scanned the side and i found h but couldn’t quite register her presence. my body screamed for water and the 30 seconds it took for me to find it seemed like an eternity. h was there then and somehow i found the strength to speak … “i am NEVER doing that again!”

now two days later the pain is slowly subsiding. stairs are still the enemy and i’m left with lingering disappointment of not meeting my goal. but i’m beginning to recognize my success. accepting the right i have to feel damn proud of what i achieved. my first half marathon — 13.1 miles — 2 hours 27 minutes and 37 seconds.

but what means more than the finishers medal they hung around my neck was the words i heard her speak; hello again, hello. next time we run it together.

yes, there will be a next time. of that i have no doubt.


Entry filed under: running. Tags: , .

i’m not ready no subject

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. gr4c5  |  February 13, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    You know me so well it’s scary. I love your brother for bringing our friendship into my life, but I love you more. WE will run again and you will kick my ass. For sure. Hello again, hello.

  • 2. becelisa  |  February 13, 2008 at 6:50 pm

    i look forward to the day. but you have it wrong. WE will kick ass … together! xo

  • 3. Single Parent Dating Online  |  February 15, 2008 at 4:19 pm

    Hi BeceLisa,

    Congrats on finishing the half-marathon. I was a dedicated
    runner up until 2 years ago and traded it in to play basketball
    instead given the rough New England winters. Your story is inspiring me to get back to pounding the pavement in the Spring. Sounds like you’re a very determined woman!

    Anyway, I have a single parent blog and would be interested in exchanging blogroll links with you. My site is dedicated to single parents re-entering the dating world again and offers a growing list of free and relevant articles. Just shoot me an email to . My blog is:

    Many Thanks


  • 4. gr4c5  |  February 17, 2008 at 9:53 am

    I can’t complete with your super long legs. The cover of Sole Sisters is a pretty good example of us :).

    PS~ Thanks for sending me your play list. When I blog I want to mention a song as a distance I’ve been able to run to & that way only you will know how long it took me to get there. Hope that makes sense!

  • 5. 5 weeks ’til mickey « becelisa  |  December 8, 2008 at 3:19 pm

    […] months ago i ran my first half marathon and i swore i would never put myself through the physical agony again. granted, back then, i had […]

  • 6. bring on the bling | becelisa  |  February 22, 2013 at 11:27 am

    […] be nothing more than “recovery”. it’s crazy how much things have changed since february of 2008 when i ran my first half. this same race actually. the gasparilla distance […]


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the best of times

5k pr ~ 24:23
10k pr ~ 52:49
half marathon pr ~ 1:55:10
marathon pr ~ 4:10:41
half ironman pr ~ 5:57:50
50k pr ~ 5:33:23
50-mile pr ~ 11:32:39



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