Bourbon Chase Countdown: 53 days

As I told you a few months ago, I'm training for the Bourbon Chase. It is a 200-mile relay that run through Bourbon Country. (And, strangely enough, right past the house I used to live in. On the actual street. Right there where it says Harrodsburg.)  

Source

And when I say I'm training? I'm taking this very seriously. I'm doing 2 long runs a weekend. I'm training on the hilliest courses I can find. Because I don't want to let my team down. I may not be fast, but I want to be solid.

I am pretty excited about my assignment, though. I will run a total of 18.3 miles in 24 hours, split between three legs. I have a difficult leg, then the hardest leg (8.6 hilly miles in "serious darkness"), then the easiest leg. I have the third hardest combination of legs. And this makes me feel surprisingly badass. It was scary as crap at first, but now I see that I was given that leg as a vote of confidence. I am a marathoner. I am an experienced runner.

I am Runner 5 because my team has faith in me. (Also? I'm RUNNER 5. My Zombies, RUN! friends know why that's exciting.)

And I am learning to have faith in myself. One of my goals for this week is to give myself credit for what I do, for where my talents are. I am going to be ready for this race, friends. Just wait and see.

*****

I am running the Bourbon Chase on a charity team for Run to Remember, supporting the National Hospice Foundation. Hospice provided incredible support to my (large, noisy, crashing-on-the-floor-in-your-office) family through my Papaw's illness. We were given peace even though we brought chaos into their center. Hospice holds a very special place in my heart.

And I'm sure it does for many of you as well.

 

I am close to my individual fundraising goal, but I'm not there yet. And I'd love to have a little extra to cover my teammates who may not have the community (both online and in real life) that I have.

Would you be able to pack your lunch one extra day this week? To do your pedicure at home this week? Maybe more? I know money is tight, friends, but every little bit helps.

We have one donation page for the entire team. If you are able to donate, please make sure to include my name so that I can carry your support and/or the memory of your loved one with me. In the space that asks “Please make my gift in memory/honor of:” fill in whatever you choose, but please put my name (Krissie) at the end. I want to make sure that I’m able to thank each of you.

And I'll make sure to drink some bourbon for you while I'm out there!

not so obvious

You know how sometimes it just takes something kinda small to realize how you perceive yourself? This morning, my running group ran out the Harrodsburg Road Trail. It was humid, as is usual this summer. It was a very fast 6 miles for me. It was a very very good run (even though I didn't like how hard Janine and Brooke pushed me at the time).

While Nathan drove home, I pulled out my phone to put the group picture on facebook. At first glance, I couldn't pick myself out.

I couldn't pick myself out because I look just like everybody else.

I was shocked when I realized that I usually picked myself out by looking for the biggest girl in the picture. And it used to be by quite a lot.

But today? I look like everyone else. I look like I belong.

I can take the chip off my shoulder. I don't have to justify that I am actually a runner. I can stop expecting that look of surprise from others.

I got a little sad when I realized that I viewed myself that way. It made me uncomfortable when I realized that I look for the "big girl" when I look for myself. But that was quickly replaced by a big sigh. Because I now know I can stop looking for her.

And I can start seeing me.

radical responsibility

Today my running group headed to Louisville to run in the Color Run.

And, just in case I haven't told you before, I organize and coordinate this running group. 4-5 group runs a week. Website, twitter, facebook. Meeting with various members for runs and reviewing training plans and having dinner. Nathan and I offered our home up to the group on Friday night for a bring-your-own-dinner Olympic Opening Ceremonies night.

I love this group. I feel like it is what I am supposed to do. I feel like it is who I am. Who I am supposed to be. I feel like I am finally starting to have some sort of idea how to eventually make this into a career, but I am doing this 100% for fun and warm fuzzy feelings right now. And I'm having lots of those.

My lovely friend Retta took this picture of me today. With my sign and balloons. Gathering people together. Making introductions. Literally forming a group. In that moment.

And the picture brought me to tears.

Because I am so proud of who I am. Because I am so proud that I took responsibility for the life I was living. Because I decided to take what I thought would make me happy and run with it. Because I don't care how much of my time it takes. But because I took responsibility for who I am.

And I can't wait to see who I become.

inevitable

Some people know what they want and then they go get it. They work training plans. They follow diets. They make plans and lists and check things off item by item.

That's where I'm having trouble with my professional goals. Because I'm not exactly sure what my end game looks like, but I'm getting closer. And I have my friends to credit for that.

When I ran with my friend Ann today, I talked some things through. Some things I probably should go ahead and start doing already. Because I'm not going to get any more comfortable stepping outside of my comfort zone unless I go ahead and start doing it. I'm not going to get anything I want unless I start asking.

So the to-do list for the upcoming week includes lots of research. Lots of emails. Lots of discomfort. Lots of putting my neck out. And making some necessary changes that might make others uncomfortable. But I can't be afraid of that. If I'm going to grow, I've got to be all in.

This is my friend Mark. He is all in. He asks for what he wants. He follows a crazy training plan. And he is swim/bike/run-ing an Ironman next month. His passion is infectious. I want to take what I have learned from Mark and start applying it to my my professional journey, not just my running journey.

In my head, the chance of me creating a career out of running and community has made the move from impossible to improbable.

Inevitable is next, friends.

the thing about running

Our alarm clock went off at 4:45.

Coffee. Breakfast. Dressed. Fuel and drink packed. Get in the car. Drive our groggy eyes across town.

Today was an amazing run. Our group split into smaller groups, running between 4 and 10 miles. Ann and Kristina ran their longest runs so far. We ran in the humidity and the rain. The conversation was comfortable. The landscape was beautiful. My heart is full.

This, my friends, is why I run.

somewhere around Keeneland, about 7am this morning