Started the year by finishing a 40-day run streak at the New Year’s Double, finishing both the 5K and the half marathon. Both temps and winds were in the teens, so it was kind of like the NYD marathon I did a few years back: Cold!!! Yet, just like last time, there’s plenty to be grateful for. Here are 18 things I’m thankful for about today’s races:

1. Made the start of the 5K! An accident had all lanes shut down. Wayz was predicting arrival several minutes past the 7 AM start. I was so crunched for time, I pinned my bib while waiting for traffic to move. Miraculously, I got to the parking lot 3 minutes before the start…but it was closed! Found another place to park and booked it to the start line. (Fastest I ran all day!) Crossed paths with runners pouring out of the chute as I made my way around to get behind the mats. Just seconds before they sent the final wave out, I made it in time to fall in with runners from the last corral!


2. Despite no warmup (save for the sprint from the car), no supplements, and not really trying, today’s 5K was almost as fast as yesterday’s, when I was trying.


3. #2 above likely due to much better conditions. No precipitation and no icy spots on the course.


4. Extra yoga pants in the car. Figured out during the 5K I needed a third layer for the half. So glad I had them handy!


5. No pit stop needed before the 5K or during either race. Only one all day, and it was between races in a real bathroom (a clean, well-lit, well-stocked one at that!), not a porta-potty. Win!


6. Aid station volunteers. Nice exchange with a couple of them, in addition to appreciating their keeping me hydrated.


7. Fellow runners. Cheered some fellow Eagles from Team RWB. Amused by one dressed as a giant squirrel and another as a blue dinosaur. Nice chat with a pair of ladies training for an Ironman. Running community is really amazing.


8. Maple syrup did not freeze (and has a no-mess cap), so I had a backup when the waffles I brought were frozen solid!


9. Beautiful sunshine day! ☀️


10. Phone held up. Some concern when it froze early on and gave error messages that it was disabled. But it came back online, and I had enough juice for the whole race.


11. Running tech worked great. Garmin had plenty of battery, and LiveTrack feature let family and friends follow me the whole way.


12. Texts of encouragement that made me smile and feel supported. I was actually planning to run/walk the last mile—until I got a message from a friend who would never let me hear the end of it if I took a walk break with .2 to go. That was the motivation I needed to hustle all the way to the finish.


13. Cool bling! Props to race director Libby Jones and The Active Joe for a great theme and design.  The gears are the 5K medals on a challenge plate for completing both days.  The large outer ring is today’s medal for the half marathon.  The memory of earning them will last far longer than the discomfort of the day.


14. I was strong and healthy enough to complete both races. Not sick and no injuries!


15. I didn’t quit! Today was more about training the will than the body. Glad I kept the commitment I made to myself to finish.


16. After I finished, I got to get in a warm car and come home to a warm house. Not everyone is so lucky.


17. On the way home, some very nice people at Chick-Fil-A handed me hot food through a window, and all I had to do was hand them a little piece of plastic. It was awesome!


18. 16.2 miles total today. I ran farther the first day of 2018 than I did any day last year. Feels like I’m off to a good start!


So much to celebrate! Happy New Year!!!