Ready or not


One of the East Nasties has a bumper sticker that says “Run Happy.”

I don’t.  Run happy, that is.

Some people are built to run – I am not.  I really do not enjoy running.  Even after dedicating myself for months, pulling myself out of bed every Saturday AND Sunday morning, and watching my mileage go up and up and up, I still don’t LIKE to run – especially because I never got the runner’s booty of my dreams.


But after months and months of training, the Country Music Half-Marathon is upon us.  The starting line is in sight.  The gun fires (or whatever it is they’ll do – fog horn? yell really loud? I’m going to yell really loud) at 7am tomorrow.

I’ve been having stress dreams about it – that I show up and don’t have my number, or my shoes have no laces, or it’s 90 degrees outside.  That’s maybe my biggest actual fear about tomorrow – that it’s going to be really hot, which is not only a possibility, but the forecasted reality.  It is unseasonably warm in Nashville right now.  Even though I don’t enjoy it, I can TOLERATE running – unless it’s hot outside.  Then it’s truly miserable – if not impossible.

I am terrified that I’m not going to succeed – that it’s going to be too hard, too far, that all of my hard work won’t have been enough.  And at this point, it’s truly a case of mind over matter: my body is strong.  I’ve put in the training.  I know that I CAN run 13.1 consecutive miles.  But my brain isn’t so sure about it – and as soon as I let those thoughts start creeping in – I’m tired, I can’t do this, this is too hard – then it’s over.  I quit.

But then, I have to remember that before October, the furthest I had ever run was one lap around Green Lake in Seattle.  And the fact that I can run 5 miles, let alone 11.2 (which was my longest training run), is ridiculously amazing.  I’ve spent the past 4 months training with an incredible group of people of all running abilities – people who have encouraged me and pushed me – and it’s a very cool thing to be a part of something larger than myself.

And there’s no way to say this without sounding completely cheesy, so I’m just going to say it: everyone who has trained for this race is already a winner.


I hereby fire myself as the writer of this blog.

But truly, ready or not.  Tomorrow it is.  I’ve worked too hard to give up now.  May my will be as strong as my legs.



  1. Sarah D on April 24, 2009 at 8:19 AM

    Good luck, Annie! I believe in you!

  2. Angie on April 24, 2009 at 8:38 AM

    Best luck! If we were in a race, the fact that you’ve run 11.2 miles would make you the winner in a “who can run longer” contest w/ me by 10.2 miles.

    Also – I agree that everyone just yelling loudly would probably be the best way to start a race.

  3. Emily on April 24, 2009 at 8:42 AM

    Go Annie, go!

    I’m so excited for you and totally, totally amazed by your mental and physical endurance. Everybody KNOWS you can do it!

    Have fun!

  4. Greta on April 24, 2009 at 9:17 AM

    I’m hiring you back as the writer of your blog.

    Annie, I am SO EXCITED FOR YOU!!!

    I’m setting my alarm for 5AM tomorrow to say a prayer and leave you a voice mail, and will set it for 30 minute intervals after that. It’s not just YOU running this race dearie– you’ll have a LOT of prayers propelling your feet!

    You have worked SO hard– pushed through pain, and discouragement…. I am so proud of you!!!!

  5. josh on April 24, 2009 at 9:20 AM

    I have been having the same dreams Annie, I’ve never been this nervous before any sporting event. I actually asked my neighborhood group to pray for me last night…

    But we are all gonna do great, I can’t wait to cheer you across the finish line!

  6. wrecklessgirl on April 24, 2009 at 9:59 AM

    i just love you.

    so there. i love that you hate running, and i love that you’re going to try. and even if you give up after a mile, i will still give you a big bravo. :)

  7. kimberly on April 24, 2009 at 12:44 PM

    Even after all my training for my half I still hate running. it was never fun.

    but race day was fun. adrenaline is a good thing. and so is knowing you finished.

    I know you can do it! good luck!!

  8. Julianne on April 24, 2009 at 12:51 PM

    You can totally do this! and you will LOVE the feeling afterwards. There is just something great about race day.

    Jon is registered for a race tomorrow (a much shorter one, but the first one in a year since he injured his knee). Unlike your fear of heat, his fear is that it will snow! We live in such opposite places.

    Best of luck–just enjoy it–you’ve put in the hard work, this is the fun part!

  9. Catherine on April 24, 2009 at 3:22 PM

    You’re going to do great! I’ll be cheering you guys on in front of Bongo (on Belmont). GO ANNIE!!

  10. Em on April 24, 2009 at 3:36 PM

    Hooray, Annie!!!
    I’m SO PROUD of you. I recall one of your very first blog posts (way back when it was on your MySpace page) about running…and just look at you NOW – running a half marathon!

    Again, SO PROUD of you!

  11. Rebecca on April 24, 2009 at 4:05 PM

    You can do it, you can do it, you can do it!

  12. FW on April 24, 2009 at 6:18 PM

    Go girl GO!

  13. Mom on April 24, 2009 at 8:51 PM

    We’re cheering for you all the way over in Kansas City! Hope you can feel the love. Run, Forrest, Run!!

  14. Lyla on April 24, 2009 at 10:14 PM

    Green Lake is what… 2-3 miles? Something like that. You can now run 11 miles. What’s a couple more. ;) Even say tomorow were 90 degrees you forgot your shoelaces, and you didn’t have a number… it’s still totally worth all of that effort because that’s a crazy amount of iprovement… especially for an asthmatic who likes cheese and alcoholic beverages. Given all of the things you’ve accomplished as of recent (road trip, moving to Nashville, starting work on recording your own music, going from out of the blue unemployment to landing what sounds like a great job), you’ve already proven that you can do even the things that scare you. Best of luck! I’ll do a rain dance for you. Wait, that might make it hard to run. I’ll do a “less sun” dance.

  15. Terry McNichols on April 25, 2009 at 12:15 AM

    Give yourself a break, Annie. You either do it or you don’t. It doesn’t define you. Enjoy the process.

  16. “Your’e the shit…beleive in the beauty of your dreams”

    hah. HAHA.

  17. kristen on April 25, 2009 at 6:35 AM

    Run, Annie, Run!!

    I’m again amazed at how I get this surge of pride when people I do not know accomplish amazing things. May you run through the finish line beaming! Seriously, though, because people have cameras at these things. You’ve trained hard for this and you are READY, and sister, consider the pancakes in your future. I hope, at least. YIPPPEEEEEE!!!

  18. Brooke on April 25, 2009 at 7:56 AM

    Hooray for race day! Hope it went well!!

  19. Anastasia on April 25, 2009 at 11:37 AM

    “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear.” – Ambrose Redmoon

    I’m proud of you for knowing this goal will be a huge mental and physical challenge tomorrow, but I’m even more proud of you for lacing up and meeting it at the starting line. I can’t wait to hear how much you loved living the victory!

  20. Cara on April 25, 2009 at 5:23 PM

    YOU DID IT! And I saw you finish strong and with a smile on your face! Way to go my amazing friend!

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