Hammy (the husband) was messing around on Twitter and made a comment about how one of the gals he follows was talking about how she is on a journey to lose weight and get stronger. I think her line (which could soooo be a tag line for me) was “I might be short, but I am strong”, which of course made Hammy tell her about my journey as well.
Anywho, as I think about everything, but especially everyone, this journey has brought into my life I can’t help but smile. In the beginning of my first blog I talked about how Tampa was where it all started. It is fair to say that had that trip not been what it was, I would not be here typing this right now. Truly some of the best people I have ever met, and to this day make me smile, or laugh, or in some cases shake my head at their goofiness (Eric, Mike, that’s for you!) I watched this group of people who had known each other for approximately 16 hours sit down and have dinner and make fun of each other like they had been doing it their whole lives. I told Mike at breakfast that I had probably heard him say 10 words, but every one of them was a zinger! Eric just made me want to hug him like a teddy bear! Kelly and Michael, I don’t think I could have made it without your smiles. This group ran under the banner of the Corn Fed Spartans. Down home, Midwesterners with a joy for running.
For my first race, The Dirty Girl, I got to meet the ever popular, and so worth it, Momma Bear. Even though she dropped me on my butt, I still love her! I added Heather to my list of forever friends that day too. Now technically I had already “met” her at Denny’s in Florida, but I hardly count that since I was half asleep and we were sitting with our own travel group. Her laugh still makes me smile inside every time!
Then I went to the Indy Sprint (which for the record is over an hour away from Indy… thank you Spartan). As I got to see the group from the Tampa trip and the Dirty Girl, I was overjoyed! I think my highlight was getting to add someone that I now consider one of my best friends, and my favorite ginger, (Chris) Lauderdale.
From there we traveled to Chicago. It felt like I was just building a pyramid and the foundation was this great group of people who I really felt comfortable with. I got to meet some of the northern CornFed folks. Eric and Mike introduced me to Windie, who even covered in mud was a bright spot in the day!
Then it came to a place where I wasn’t even having to travel to meet new and amazing people. One friendship started out as message of Facebook saying “your comment about not needing a before picture on Transformation Tues, because you don’t even want to think about the person you were – and are only moving forward from here was wonderfully said!” has become someone who had enough faith in me to send me his jersey, because he knew I could do it. Thank you, Scott.
Another Facebook friendship happened by just being a nerd and a Spartan all at the same time. Joe has turned into a sounding board, and someone I talk to daily. Thank you, sir!
Even instagram brought me closer to an amazing Spartan Chick. I had been following Jennifer for quite awhile and it was at a race that she introduced herself to me. She amazes me with strength daily, and she doesn’t even know it!
The more people I knew within the team the more connected I felt to this journey. Yes, I picked it for myself, but in some ways, I feel like this group carried me towards it. Aside from reminding me that I could be more and that they were there to help me achieve that, this mud and racing thing brought me back to a wonderful friend. Angel and I had known each other since 8th grade, but it wasn’t until we dove into Spartan that we came back around. Every race I have run since really getting into this, I have run with her, and every race I haven’t run, I have been there to support her.
Anywho, as I look back to this last almost two years, I cannot believe how long the list of wonderful people have been added to my heart. I know this story is about me, but ultimately, I wouldn’t be ME if it weren’t for each of you!
***PS… There are soooo many of you CFS’ers that I would have loved to add to this, but I didn’t want to break your trust in me by using your name without permission. You know who you are, and I love you for it!