Journey with me as I ever so slowly attempt to run 50 races in 50 states by the time I am 50...

Friday, June 24, 2011

Corps, Corps, Nothin' but the Corps!

Okay, that is not an official AmeriCorps cheer, but when my friend Ali's friend Richard heard that AmeriCorps*NCCC has a pledge (not a cheer), he assumed it sounded something like that.

So why the reference to the incorrect cheer that brings me back to my days of glory?

Because, people, it's...
and I've decided to participate. The reason for flashing back to AmeriCorps*NCCC specifically is that this is a running blog, and AmeriCorps is where the love affair began.

I always knew I wanted to do a year of service after graduating college and I was pumped to start AmeriCorps in California. The program is amazing and was absolutely the best year of my life.

However.

I knew that part of the program was PT and to be placed in a group, each corps member would be tested on push-ups, sit-ups, and running a mile and a half. A mile and a half! It may as well have been a million.

The last time I had run a mile was in gym class senior year and I'm sure it took me an embarrassingly long time. I had never run a mile and a half. Running equaled difficulty breathing and humiliation in my life.

But.

I am competitive.

Always have been.

So I decided I would start running so I would NOT be in the lowest group. My first run was with my dad, who (unknowingly) tricked me into doing 2 miles instead of 1, and the whole time I thought I hate this, I hate this. As I continued to run, the words slowly changed to just keep running, just keep running and eventually faded away all together.

I was hooked.

I don't remember how long it took me to finish the mile and a half during the test, but I know it was enough to put me in the second fastest group. Whew.

We ran every morning at 5:30 during training. I fell in love.

By the end of the year I had completed my first 10K and I had fallen in love with so many other things. My team. My friends. Sacramento. Portland. Hawaii. San Francisco. Kids. Trees. Trails. Early mornings. Late nights. Subway sandwiches. Sore bodies. Billy Billy Bop.

Here's my team: Blue 7. The Superfreaks.


We dressed like this to go to the movie theaters


We played lots of silly games


We created still lifes (Santa on a sleigh with his reindeer, of course)


We learned how to hula at a Senior center


We saved a lot of cars from the mud (mostly our own)


And so much more.

Thank you Blue 7, thank you Team Friends, and thank you AmeriCorps for giving my such an amazing year, bringing out my love of running, and developing my passion for service.

12 comments:

  1. Hey! I've actually been popping in on your blog once in a while via Lauren (you're on her blog roll list :) I think your life goal of 50 runs is really cool! And you have, in my opinion, a super good time for your runs! My first half I did in 2:08, and I felt like I ran as fast as I could go. Also, aren't those Garmin watches awesome? I love mine! Thanks for checking out my blog!

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  2. Hey Amanda-- I love that you have been visiting and thanks for the comment. It has taken me a while to increase my speed- my first half was 2:06. I don't think speed compared to others matters at all...I just love the feeling of doing my best. Cheesy, I know. :)

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  3. It' so weird to think of a time that you WEREN'T a runner! Sheesh. I really love the look on concentration on your face while you hula too! haha

    Thanks so much for linking up, it means a lot to me to have friends play along.

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  4. p.s. I've secretly wanted you & Amanda to be BFF's for a long time now... I had no idea she's been reading your blog! I didn't even do anything & yet I'm feeling like an evil genius.

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  5. @Lauren- I know! I look so dorky! I can perform it for you whenever you want, though. There is a song too. :) And thanks for secretly mysteriously connecting me to new bloggers-- I love it!

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  6. This is so amazing and what accomplishments you've made! Good luck to you and all your health goals, it seems you are very determined and I admire that so much! Just before I got pregnant I started up running and I LOVED it, I can't wait to get back to it this fall:)I'm happy to meet you through Laurens Flashback Friday! I'm your newest follower! http://www.mammatown.blogspot.com

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  7. You have a great blog! I am visiting from the Boost My Blog Friday! I am your newest follower and would love it if you would follow me back! thanks so much!
    -Nikki
    http://chef-n-training.blogspot.com/

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  8. Hi! I'm following you from B.M.B.F!
    I hope you visit me and return the
    follow:0)

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  9. @Chana,Nikki and Tanya-- hooray! I love new followers. Thanks so much, and I am now following all your lovely sites as well.

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  10. Oh and Chana-- anytime you want to talk running or need encouragement- I'm your girl! Obviously it's one of my favorite topics. :)

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  11. Lauren, you ARE an evil genius. Don't doubt it. Caitlin, I decided to make it official and follow you! Now I can stalk you in a more obvious way :)

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  12. Ah ha ha...thank you both- Lauren for the evil plot, and Amanda for the public stalking. :)

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