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#IHAVEARRIVED at 25... and 26.2

San Luis Obispo, CA, United States
4 Kudos
6 months, 12 days, and two and a half hours into my adventure, which certainly wasn't the kind that comes with a complimentary drink I mind you, I found myself quietly counting each breath and step as my feet kept the beat of a well-rehearsed percussionist. I wondered if 25 is going to be different than the years before. I wondered about my past; I contemplate my future. Had I done well enough? I pass the marker labeled "Mile 17" to my right, followed by a homemade neon sign that reads "don't trust that fart!" How comforting.It's about 8:35am and the town is just beginning to wake up around me. Green rolling hills go on for miles and miles ahead. Normally this sight would be one I would admire and stop to take photos of to post to social media, but today, the thought of miles of "rolling hills" made my legs tense up. I had been training for the marathon for the better part of a year. Countless weekends of skipping out on brunch plans and nights soaking in an ice bath play on repeat through my brain each time I feel myself slowing down. I didn't come to quit.This particular marathon was very different than many which are publicly televised. With a course that spreads throughout the beautiful countryside of SLO, there are very few spectators due to road closures and lack of routes for vehicles full of moms and grandparents. This gives you a lot of time alone with your thoughts, which is sometimes the hardest part of the marathon. The reason I had chosen this particular race was because it fell on my 25th birthday. I know, I know it seems cliché. But sometimes a girl needs a chick flick-girl power 'miss independent' movie montage moment every few decades. My entire family, including my parents and their significant others, siblings, grandparents and childhood friends all piled into an ocean front rental home for the occasion. It was the first time we had all been together like that for as long as I can remember and the excitement as well as the pressure weighed heavy on my heart as I went to sleep the night before. I remember crying as I laid in bed, recounting memories of summers at the beach as a kid with my brother and sister. I was so afraid that I would fail in front of everyone who believed in me so much for all these years.When I approach mile 22, I see a crowd of people to the left holding signs. Immediately tears well up in my eyes as I see my best childhood friend jumping up and down and beaming. I'm so close. A quick stop to high five my fan club and I continue up the last few hills. As I approach the final stretch of the course, I dig deep for that last energy I need to get me across the finish line. I cross. #IHAVEARRIVED
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