The Ogden Pub Runners not-for-profit organization aims to promote fitness at all levels, encourage social and responsible drinking, and support locally and independently owned watering holes. They have, over the last three years, contributed to Real Men Can Cook, the YCC domestic violence center, many local races as volunteers, and GOAL and The Ogden Marathon. Christina Miller is a member of the group.
I’m training to run the Ogden Marathon 5K.
What the heck am I doing?
I’m not a runner. I’m a turtle of a wanderer, but here I am training to run. Why? I’ve spent a lot of time thinking I can’t run, that I’m not built to run, I’m too overweight to run, I’ve had too many injuries to run, I don’t want injuries if I run, but not a lot of time thinking about what if I can run. It’s time to change that and embrace the mantra of fellow Ogden Pub Runners member Donna Hernandez: “You can do hard things.”
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Last year, I trained to walk the Ogden Half, and I would have finished if the weather hadn’t gotten the best of me. But I did end up walking two other half marathons last year. I was able to do hard things! When I started training to walk those half marathons, I really thought it wasn’t going to be possible. I was super out of shape, and it hurt to walk. I was recovering for long-term sickness and injuries that came from that sickness. Yet I committed to an 18-week program, and I trained. I built the strength, stamina and fortitude to walk half marathons. I did’t walk fast, I didn’t run, I came in last, but I finished and proved to myself I could do it.
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So here I am, training to run the Ogden Marathon 5K from end to end. I don’t plan to walk at all. I just want to keep moving forward and I don’t care how fast I go. But I want to run. I want to do this for me to see what limits I put on myself and see if I can push through them. But I also want to do this for others who have done much harder things than me, in honor of them.
This is for Dan Nelson, who is fighting cancer with a depth of grace and courage that blows my mind. I want to find if I have an ounce of Dan’s fortitude in my own being.
This is for Donna Hernandez, who is learning to walk again after being hit by a car at an OPR night last summer. She is the one who pushed me off my ledge of fear last year and continued to by my No. 1 fan throughout my training. But now she is training for the race of her life, to get her life back and to run again. She hates me every time I say this, but Donna is the strongest and bravest woman I have ever met. I want to run, to do hard things, so I can try to embody the courage and strength she carries herself with day in and day out.
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Yes, I’m doing this for me, so I can push myself to see what is possible. I’m doing this for Dan and Donna, so they know they’ve impacted my life and inspire me daily. But I’m also doing this for you — all of you who think you can’t.
I find that advertising and marketing for long races like the Ogden Marathon focuses on those who are elite athletes, and those who are in shape and can run. But those like me who are overweight, out of shape and have never run a day in their lives don’t have a role model to show us it’s possible for us to do these races as well.
I’m here to tell you it is possible, and I hope you’ll join me on this journey. I can tell you from last year, I was cheered along by everyone — all the elite runners, the hobbiest runners and everyone who passed me. They did not judge me for being slow and fat. The gave me love and support. Ogden Pub Runners gave me love and support. So now I’m here to share that love with you.
So, come join me this May for the Ogden Marathon!