13 in ’13: My First [And Somewhat Crazy] Goal of the New Year

The new year has a way of inspiring people to make changes: the blank slate we get every January 1 provides us with a great opportunity to get rid of bad habits and adopt new (and healthier) ones. As much as I love new beginnings and the excitement around a new year, my profession as a tax accountant has made the holiday a bit of a downer. To me, January 1 means the start of another long busy season…which usually means nothing else but taxes, taxes, taxes until April 15. Therefore, I usually forfeit making the usual resolutions (start exercising regularly, eat better, get more sleep, etc.) until work slows down a bit. Knowing this, one would think I wouldn’t try to set any drastic goals for the first four months of the year. And one would think that at 11:45 pm on December 31, I would be enjoying some final moments of relaxation while waiting for the ball to drop. But one would be wrong.

Instead of a champagne toast, I rang in the New Year by signing up to run the 2013 Country Music half-marathon in Nashville, TN.

That’s right. In less than four months I, along with my husband and several of my co-workers, will be running 13.1 miles in the best city south of the Ohio River.

Let me back up a minute to explain how in the world this happened. I used some vacation time around the recent holidays and was “lucky” enough that a few of those days off corresponded with a snow storm in Northeast Ohio. On a particularly blizzard-y day, I was snowed-in and bored. I did some cleaning but grew tired of that. I read for a while but grew tired of that as well. I attempted to write some blogs posts, but alas, grew tired of that. So I finally gave into the temptations of my couch and a big soft blanket to watch some television. My channel surfing eventually brought me to the new show, Nashville.

That was it. After four episodes, I was longing to go back to my favorite city in the South. I brought up the idea of a trip to Ryan, who amazingly said “Let’s go!” Man, I love that guy.

However, he interrupted my squeals of excitement by continuing with: “But let’s go for a reason.”

Personally, I am under the belief that Nashville itself is a perfectly good reason to go to Nashville – but apparently Ryan is not.

We’ve been having conversations for the past few months about how much we miss being in shape and running – conversations I’m now regretting, as his suggested “reason” for the trip was the Nashville half-marathon. And in a moment of insanity, I agreed.

So while we should have been relaxing and enjoying the last moments of the year 2012, we were signing up to run 13.1 miles. And, of course, the three and a half months of training that go along with them.

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My best friends for the next three and a half months

I woke up on the first day of 2013 the most nervous I’ve been in a while. Even though I’ve run a half-marathon before, this one is scheduled just weeks after the official end of tax season. The mere tought of the time commitment involved made me regret what we’d done. Luckily, a few events in the last couple of days have brought back my excitement:

First, Ryan and I have been waking up at 4:30 am to go to the gym. I haven’t laced up my running shoes on a regular basis in a few months, but by some miracle, I was able to run 2.25 miles without stopping the first day – and it felt great. My confidence really needed that – I can do this!

Secondly, while it was a major bummer going back to work, making plans with my co-workers who are also running the half really helped. As have the conversations about the nights we’ll spend in Nashville AFTER the half-marathon is complete. Look out, Broadway Street!

Finally, I think it’s pretty cool that we’ll be running a 13-mile race in the year 2013. Is that a good luck sign, or what?

I feel better about it, but I’m still nervous about this commitment. However, in the spirit of a new year and a new attitude, I’m going to view this as a good kind of nervous:

The kind of nervous that will keep getting me out of bed before the sun is up to go run…

The kind of nervous that will help me push through those long runs when I want to stop…

And the kind of nervous that will continue to motivate me all the way to the finish line on April 27.

And if for some reason all that nervousness fails me, the anticipation and excitement for the days we’ll be spending in Nashville after the race surely will.

Here’s to our 13 in ’13 and all of the resolutions everyone has made for 2013!

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