Runner Days with Trinity
I’m so excited to welcome Trinity Smith as our first guest-post to “Runner Days” on Cape Cod Runner!
Trinity is a former colleague and current friend of mine :-) He’s 31, living and running in his hometown Austin, Texas. His story is full of incredible inspiration, hope you enjoy!
I have never thought of myself as a runner. In fact, I hated running with every ounce of my soul because I was overweight and very out of shape most of my teenage and young adult life. In September 2011 I made a choice that changed my life forever. At almost 100lbs overweight, I realized that I was going to die if I didn’t do something about it. So I did what every overweight person does – I started a diet and exercise plan. The difference was that I committed to myself to change! My mantra – “Hard work. Dedication.” I tried just about every exercise in the book trying to find something I enjoyed, but I didn’t connect with anything. At the time, my closest friend was training for her first half-marathon and kept asking me to join in on the training. I resisted with everything I could. I wasn’t a runner and didn’t plan to be. Ever.
As my first month of exercise and calorie counting flew by, I began to understand the importance of cardio in my daily routine in order to achieve my weight loss goals. With that in mind, I started reading about how to get started as a runner and faced the treadmill head on. It was a painful and slow beginning as my body acclimated to the pain of impact and my lungs struggled to produce enough oxygen to not pass out. I was dedicated and determined! I pushed the limits of my overweight body every time I stepped on that rotating track of doom. Before I knew it, I was able to run 3 miles without stopping! Small victories.
As the pounds began to fall off, the impact pain decreased and my lung capacity increased. My friend finally talked me into joining her for an outdoor run… GAME CHANGER! I had been missing out on this outdoor running! At that point I was hooked, and she finally persuaded me to start training for a half-marathon. It was scary and exciting at the same time. I set my eyes on the Livestrong Austin Half, created a training schedule and ran my way through the 2011 winter season with my new running buddy, Ms. Jeanette Hooker.
By the time the Livestrong Austin Half came around in February 2012, I had dropped about 75lbs! The goal for my first half was to just finish, and I did in 2:53. I crossed the finish line chanting my mantra of “Hard work. Dedication” and in that moment my thoughts changed from “I will never be a runner” to “I am a runner.”
I have now run four half-marathons, two 10-milers and countless 5 and 10K races. A full marathon has been in the back of my mind as a future goal, but I am constantly striving to improve (pace, stride, foot strike, breathing) at the half-marathon distance. I am proud to say that my 2013 Livestrong Half time was 2:31 – 22 minutes faster! I have also vowed to share my story with anyone who says “I can’t run” or “I’m not a runner” as that is where I started and found a passion in something I once feared.
I started running to save my life. Now I run because my life is worth every stride, every mile, every shin splint and side stitch, every PR (or finish) and every medal. I run because I AM a runner.