Today's post is about displaying your medals from your races. I used to just drop mine in a drawer or hang them on the sides of the dresser mirror. You can only do that for so long then the mirror just falls off from the weight of all of them! Anyway, I used to take the medal from a race for granted. They didn't mean anything to me, except the ones where I actually placed in my age group or won my age group. I only have about 2 or 3 of those so they weren't going to weigh down my mirror!!
I even gave away about 8-10 of my medals to patients when we had Therapy Olympics at work one year. This tells you how meaningless they were to me at the time.
It wasn't until about 6 years ago, after my massive issues with IVF and the major set backs to my running that they became precious to me. Somehow when you can't run or you can no longer perform at the level you used to the medal becomes more meaningful.
Each medal was an achievement of something I wasn't even sure I was going to be able to do again. As many of you know I fractured my spine in 3 different places and then had the entire left side of my body go numb and weak after the hormone injections with IVF and ended up in the emergency room 3 separate times. It was after that last time that my doctor told me he was not comfortable with me exercising.
The thought of not exercising had not even crossed my mind. I knew if I had started back to running after the fractures in my back, I would start back after the IVF stuff. (I am not condoning not listening to your doctor!) As many of you know I did an Olympic distance triathlon a few months later. It was not pretty, but I did it. Since I started running again I have done 30-50 races. Yes, I am a bit obsessed.
Then in 2014 I signed up for the NYC marathon. I was terrified because I really wasn't sure my body could go that distance. I won't tell the story because most of you know about the plantar fascia tear when I was playing around that cost me 10 weeks in a boot prior to the marathon.
Me and my medal (I was freezing!).
Me at mile 25 of the NYC marathon.
Anyway, I did it and it was amazing. I had pain almost the whole way but I made it and I proved to myself that my body could do it again. That medal was one of my most precious. So, I want to say, treasure those medals, race bibs, and memories of each race. You never know when you might go through something that keeps you from running and you will wish you had a race to run and a medal to get!! I just want to throw in one other thing about a medal I enjoyed getting: the medal from the Marine Corps Marathon. It was very cool to have the Marine salute me and hang a medal on my neck even though I am the one so grateful for him and his service. (Don't forget my hubby is a Marine! And no, he was not the one to hang the medal on me!)
Here is how I display my bibs and medals:
And yes, I will and do run for and to Starbucks quite frequently! My husband bought me the other one to hang my medals from all 50 states! I have only made a little bit of progress on that one because I tend to race in the same states all the time, but I will get an A state after this weekend because we are headed to Arizona for the Rock N Roll!!
For Christmas I decorated one of my trees with running shoes, race medals, and bibs and I made a tree skirt out of race t-shirts!
Be Proud of your running!!