Actually it hasn't been that long...and it's been more surreal than strange.
I look back over the past three years and I ask myself...well, how did I get here?
Three Years Ago...
- I had recently returned to running and was taking a training class at Potomac River Running
- Rick was preparing to run his first marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon
- I wanted a big goal, too, and set my sights on the Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run
- I applied to be a Cherry Blossom "Social Runner," even though I had almost zero social media presence
- When I wasn't selected, I decided to start a running blog and chronicle my Cherry Blossom training anyway
- I called my blog "Kim Runs...Becoming a Runner"
Two Years Ago...
- I had conquered the 2014 Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run & Nike Women's Half Marathon
- I trained with Potomac River Running to be a running coach, and was given the opportunity to coach the 2015 Cherry Blossom training program
- I again applied to be a Cherry Blossom Social Runner
- I wasn't selected, but I was given the opportunity to be part of the race's blog team
- I realized I had become runner, and changed the name of my blog to "Kim Runs Miles With Smiles"
- I told my friends I had absolutely no interest in running a marathon
One Year Ago...
- I ran the Marine Corps Marathon - one of the proudest days of my life!
- I was a more experienced coach, preparing for the 2016 PR Cherry Blossom training program
- I was chosen as a race ambassador/blogger for the 2016 Cherry Blossom race
- I'm finally starting to run again after six months of learning to manage hallux rigidus; there were times I was drafting a "Letting Go of the Runner" blog post in my head, so I'm very, very grateful to run again
- The longest race I've run this year was a 10K, and I'm hoping to run the MCM 10K in a few weeks
- I am the social media coordinator for the 2017 Cherry Blossom race (!!!)
- I am taking a break from coaching since I wouldn't be able to give my best to both positions at the same time
The Army Ten Miler is tomorrow, and much of the Cherry Blossom social media activities will ramp up quickly after the ATM race. We'll be launching our 2017 race ambassador search, planning our November 18th fall kickoff party, and making a pretty big announcement next week! I'm so excited to be a part of all of this, and it is crazy to look back on the last three years and try to figure out how I got here.
Yesterday while I roamed the ATM expo, surprising runners with Cherry Blossom sticky microfiber phone cleaners (they are cooler than they sound), I connected with so many people I've met over the last three years. People from Potomac River Running, race directors and race representatives, running apparel brand representatives, social media coordinators, bloggers.
I knew these people. I was friends with a lot of them. It occurred to me that I haven't just become a runner. I've become a part of the running community. And even if I have to stop running someday, I will still be a part of this wonderful, welcoming, supportive community. I am so grateful.