50 by 50 would really be nifty.

I’m pretty sure that was the first time in my life I’ve ever used the word “nifty”, but it’s for a good reason, I promise.

Several years ago, I had the crazy bright idea of running 50 marathons in all 50 states. I came up with this little gem of a life goal after I had already started doing marathons and had accidentally doubled up on a few states, but no matter: I was determined.

I scoured the race calendars. I bought a wall map of the U.S. of A. I started using those little round stickers that I usually reserve for mismatched tea sets and small appliances at garage sales.

But then, things like having a newborn, breast pumps, a busy job, relocating to a new area, and – well – a few naps got in the way.

Fast-forward to today. If I’m going to call myself a recovering procrastinator, I’d better put my money where my mouth is.

I adjusted my goal of 50 marathons in 50 states just a bit (my bank account got into a big huge fight with my mind over the whole thing. There was name-calling involved, it wasn’t pretty. In the end, my mind conceded that with the rising costs of airfare these days, it just wasn’t going to be sensible to use the family’s travel budget on something that only I would get to suffer through enjoy.)

Enter my New Goal = 50 marathons by age 50. This way, I can kick it local-style and not break the bank in the process.*

*Disclaimer: I’ve had some weird and slightly annoying hip/pelvis thing going on for a few years and, well, my mom worries about me. She’s asked me to please clear all of this with my physical therapist, and that’s just what I’m going to do. Because we should always listen to our moms. Always.

Now, I was no math major in college. Math problems usually look something like this to my artsy fartsy brain:

So it took me the better part of my lunch break to do some crude calculations.

Here, you can join in on the fun:

Problem: If Melisa is currently (ahem) in her late 30’s, and has run 6 marathons in 4 different states*, how many marathons will she have to run per year to reach 50 by age 50?

*The part about the states is irrelevant. Just checking to see if you’re paying attention.

(Feel free to grab a pen and paper. I’ll wait.)

Solution: to meet my goal, I will need to complete 3-4 marathons per year (can someone check my math, please?).

Alrighty then.

Since I’ve changed my motto from “there’s no time like tomorrow” to the age-old favorite “there’s no time like the present” I signed John and I up for this marathon in October.

(Oh yeah, John, if you’re reading this, you are running a marathon in October. Just FYI. You may want to mark your calendar).

The great thing about marathons besides the blisters and chaffing is that they are PERFECT for procrastinators. Especially cheap ones. Who wants to drop a hundred bucks a pop and then not get the agony joy of experiencing money well spent? Not me, thank you very much.

This is my carrot, people.

And just to keep myself accountable, I will post updates on my progress. I am a big fan of Hal Higdon’s training programs, and since I am basically so embarrassingly out of shape I can barely scale a flight of stairs without getting winded, I am going to begin with his novice program:

Now, before you go getting all “Hey Melisa, I didn’t see you post a run today” on me, the training will begin on June 6th. It’s the day after we return from Europe so I may be all jet-leggy and detoxing from Italian wine, but dammit. No excuses. Let’s do this thing. Who’s with me?

(Seriously, feel free to do it with me.)

In totally unrelated news, I met two dear friends, Laurie and Danis, for dinner last night at this great place in West Seattle. We have known each other for nearly 30 years and we get together once a month to eat, drink and laugh our asses off. I love these girls in big huge ways. There is nothing like walking down memory lane with friends who knew you before you discovered eyebrow waxing. And, we have to take a self-portrait every month. Much to the dismay of everyone within earshot of us.

We are pretty sure we’re hilarious and are still trying to figure out why no one agrees with us.

Last but not least, I wanted to give a little shout out to my most favorite small blonde person, Olivia. Last week, she sprained her ankle doing this:

Check the pink glove. The kid’s got style.

And now she has to go around wearing this:

Check the finger snap and hip sway. Nothin’s gonna stop this girl from gettin’ her groove on.

There is nothing worse for a parent than seeing their kid in pain and not being able to do anything about it, but the most beautiful part of this story is Olivia’s get-er-done attitude about it all. She has to wear this thing all day, every day, and she is taking it in stride (well, not quite in stride so much as a little limpy shuffle, but you get the idea).

She came up with the (totally clever) idea to make a “Star Chart” like she does at preschool. For every day that she successfully wears her brace, she gets to put a sticker on this chart:

And every single morning and every single night, she does a count and re-count of how many days she has left. This is a huge deal around our house (she even wants to pack her chart tonight for the sleep-over she’s having at her little friend’s house). She has requested a movie at the MOVIE THEATER when she completes her chart. She totally deserves it. I am crazy proud of this girl. She makes getting out of bed every day a ton of fun.

In short, I am definitely going to get into the habit of flossing regularly. Starting tomorrow.

P.S. If you promise to keep reading my blog, I promise to never use the word “nifty” again.

What are some of your goals?


26 thoughts on “50 by 50 would really be nifty.

  1. You have a gorgeous daughter and amazingly hot friends!! ;). Especially love the big-headed red head. Nice….

  2. I am so glad you posted tonight – feels like a little girl pal time chit chat with one of my most favorites in the world. Some of my goals? Be a successful speaker, maybe earn my Phd? Potty train my child 😉

    • Aww, thank you, lovely lady! The feeling is mutual. I love your goals! Though I suspect you are already an amazing speaker, could earn your PhD in your sleep, and will have that lady in Big Girl undies before you know it! xoxo

  3. Ok, so when I saw the title of your blog, I was expecting a 50 Shades of Gray blog, not marathons and such nonsense. Would you consider running one (or more) of those for Team in Training? If so, I may do one with you!

    • Ha ha! No, you’re thinking of a blog that Kristine would write. Ha! Yes, I would definitely consider TNT and would love to share that experience with my very favorite neighbor!! xo

  4. Where did my reply go…so hereit is again. I most definitely agree about the ‘hotness’ factor and I will also consider flossing tonight.0

  5. Go melisa! You are awesome and I look forward to watching you suffer – I mean train 😉 Hal higdon is the man. We use his training plans and philosophies for our training too with great success!

  6. M1 – here is my first comment that never made it thru: I love the training and I just know that I could run 3 minutes now and then (that is what the m means, right??) And what did your Dr have to say about the marathons? The only thing worse than procrastination is my Impatience!!!
    loveyoumeanit xoxo Mom

  7. P.S. Just what is wrong with the word nifty? I happen to like it and give you permission to use it anytime you like and a Mom’s permission is not exactly near gospel but kinda powerful. xoxo M2

  8. Hmmm, you seem to have forgot to answer my question about your Dr’s okey-dokey on marathons… Do you imagine for a nano second that I will quit asking? Did you know that I can be persistent? That seems to go hand-in-hand with impatient (no wonder my boss calls me sledgehammer and chainsaw – something to do with my methods/approach!! I tell him it’s simply that I don’t think he “gets” it the first 3 times I attempt to get my way). Geez…

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