independence day

When I did my how I want to feel vision board post last week, I wasn't aware that the second one would follow so close behind. The last 24 hours have been so inspiring. I feel like this is truly who I am supposed to be. This is my sweet spot. This is where I belong.

While I was at work yesterday, I found out that a piece I wrote for HerKentucky had been published. I told the story of the running group and a little about what running in Kentucky means to me. I am thrilled with it.

We started our mid-week holiday celebration with (what else?) a run. I'm really digging the West Sixth Run Club. A brewery is just such a great place to gather before and after a run. These friends are just the ones who gathered at this table. I knew and chatted with a lot of other Ladies from the group.

I ran my 3 miles with Toa. I love this girl. She is such a great encourager to me. We didn't just run, we talked about passion. We brainstormed ways for me to follow my passion into a career. She gave me hope and kinda stoked the fire. Then we got caught quite the pop-up storm. It was pretty awesome. All in all, it was a great way to kick off this round of marathon training.

From there (well, after an amazing tomato salad from a food truck), I went home and got to work. When I ran the Run the Bluegrass Half-Marathon this spring, there was a guy there with a huge cut-out hand giving high fives. And I knew I wanted to be that girl. Granted, my hand looked a little more like a cartoon hand (with a very odd-shaped middle finger), but I was hoping it would get the point across.

This morning, Nathan and I got up earlier than we do for work. He got ready to race. I got my Big Hand and was ready to cheer. We headed downtown. It was time for the Bluegrass 10,000.

We headed to our picture spot, and I was surrounded by familiar faces. I bet I'd given 20 high-fives before the race even started. I still can't believe how many people I know. Our little running community just keeps growing. This group picture just blows me away. (I'm not in it because I took it!)

And then my job started. It was my job to cheer. I had Jen and the twins for company at the start line. I have no idea how many high-fives I gave. A lot. I had told all of the Ladies that I'd be on the left, and it seemed like the were EVERYWHERE. Add in the people that I know from other running groups we run with and random strangers that love a high-five and I was a busy busy girl!

Jen took her boys to the Fun Run and I met up with our runner and photographer, Ann. We yelled and cheered at the 2.5 mile mark and then just a little ways before the finish line. It was so fun to see the same people multiple times. There were also people who waved at me at one point and then made their way over to high-give on the next sighting.

I loved getting smiles from runners. This is my friend Katie. Her leg hasn't really wanted her to run lately, but she finished today with a smile. I'm so glad Ann caught this picture. Because I saw faces like these for over an hour today. I ran into the crowd to meet friends halfway. I ran into the crowd to initiate the high-five for runners/walkers who looked like they really needed it. I rocked the Big Hand. I couldn't tell you the last time I had more fun. My face hurt from smiling. I love cheering so much that I almost never want to run a race again. Almost. (You can see all of Ann's photos here. And the handsome red-head? Yeah. That's my fella.)

This is how I want to feel. This is how I want to interact with people. This. This. and more of This.