Brenda’s Journey: Looking Back to Go Forward

After being diagnosed with cancer in 2009, Brenda decided it was time to take charge and get healthy.  As she exercised and gained a new level of fitness, she realized that she was in charge of her body and started enjoying the activity.  After recently having her leg broken, Brenda shares her insights on getting back to healthy.

Welcome to a new decade. There were definitely some highlights in the past decade. And some lowlights too. I wanted to take time to look at where I’ve been so I’m better prepared to move forward.

I started the decade with a bilateral mastectomy. Shortly after that, learned I would need chemotherapy due to the additional tumor found. I also was looking for a new job. So much for the first quarter of 2010!

I didn’t let that rough start carry through the year. I decided to start a walking program and quickly made the decision to walk my first half-marathon. Why? Why not! It was something my daughter and I did together and I honestly believe it helped both with my physical recovery and my mental outlook. I ended that year turning 50 and getting my first race medal. I went on to complete 5 more half-marathons and taking up running.

I spent 2011 doing an event a month to keep me motivated. And in 2012 I did my first triathlon. I wanted to see if I could and I did. That triathlon helped me fall in love with biking. I completed the Seattle-to-Portland (STP) bike ride in 2017. And then tried to find something to keep me motivated in 2018. My plans took a turn with my broken leg.

Now, I’m ending the decade recovering and trying to get my “move it” mojo back.

Since I’m working at taking my time in recovery so I don’t go backwards, I decided a ‘virtual’ race would be perfect. When I saw the Run the Year 2,020 miles in 2020 opportunity, I jumped in. Well, actually hobbled.

How do you complete 2,020 miles in a year? One step at a time. Actually 11,000 steps a day. So just over 5 miles. There will be days when I’ll be lucky to get to 2 miles. But that’s OK. It’s the movement that matters. And having friends who will go the distance with me. By summer, I want to be back on my bike riding the paved paths in Seattle. And finding new trails to wander with family.

I started January 1 with a short walk in my neighborhood, dinner with family, and setting my micro-goals for 2020. I’ll keep going each day. And the next day. And the next. I’ve learned not to beat myself up if I don’t hit a “target” for the day. I’ll take the long view and watch my goal tick away mile by mile, not day by day.

What are you doing to get moving and motivated in 2020? We live in such a beautiful area with plenty of wonderful paths to wander. And they’re a bus ride, short car ride, or bike ride away. Share your plans with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Follow Brenda’s Journey

ANW Team

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