One idea in particular struck a cord: dedicate each mile to someone or something that has helped me get to this point. It took some thinking but I came up with a list - most of the numbers have something to do with the dedication so I can remember.
Mile 1: My mom Mary (January birthday) This 7 year breast cancer survivor is the reason I trained for my first triathlon (Tri for the Cure) and fell in love with running.
Mile 2: Our son Justin (February birthday) A soon-to-be teenager that doesn't understand why I do what I do, but he still hugs me everyday and says he loves me. Can't beat that.
Mile 3: My mother-in-law Corinne (March birthday) She lives a couple miles from us and I can pretty much call on her any time to help with kids, usually so I can get a workout in.
Mile 4: My step-father Franz (April birthday) My Mom's "rock" that has ran his fair share of miles during his athletic lifetime and "gets it."
Mile 5: My brother Ted (May birthday) I can't convey how special this guy is to me in one or two sentences. I will say he has helped make me the athlete I am today and I love him to death.
Mile 6: June. In June 2011, a week before my birthday, I fractured 3 toes during a run and I thought Boston would never happen. Time does heal.
Mile 7: My husband Mike (Born on the 7th) This man is my world and has supported me through every crazy antic, thought and event I've attempted. There is no way I would be here without him, he is an incredible husband and father.
Mile 8: My Facebook andTwitter Family. For some reason over 8,000 people are interested in my life. So many of them have reached out with encouragment along with way and I am very grateful for my "social" friends.
Mile 9: Our daughter Sam (September birthday). This girl is a pile of energy that never stops moving - she is always smiling, laughing and dancing. I can't imagine life without her.
Mile 10: My sister-in-law Lynnette (October birthday) A fellow long distance runner who ran Rock & Roll Arizona with me when I qualified for Boston. I had never thought about qualifying until she brought it up the night before when looking at a pace chart. I thank her for planting the seed.
Mile 11: Me (born on the 11th). I'm going to dedicate this one to me. It's a grind preparing for a marathon and rarely do we thank ourselves, our bodies and our minds. Plus Mile 11 is just before Wellesley College where the all-girls student body lines the course. Chick power.
Mile 12: Mile High Multisport. Pete & Kathy Alfino were my first triathlon coaches who also trained me through my first two marathons (Las Vegas & Arizona). Pete's a sucker for good looking women so I'm giving MHM the entire mile of Wellesley College.
Mile 13: Justin (born on the 13th). Immediate family members are getting 2 miles each, they deserve it. Justin and I share a love of music and I will think of songs from his favorite artist (Pitbull) during the half-marathon point.
Mile 14: My niece Zoe (born on the 27th, so about half that number). Ted & Lynnette's girls are the cutest things ever and I love being "Aunt Susie". I will think of her and smile.
Mile 15: Coach Tom Baldwin. When I was 15, my parents divorced and Coach B (who also taught biology) became a wonderful mentor and shoulder to lean on. Anyone from Broomfield High School knows how special he was and still is.
Mile 16: The Boston Marathon (The 116th running & it's on April 16th) It's the Mother of all Marathons and I feel very privledged to be a part of it. Mile 16 is also where the infamous Newton Hills begin.
Mile 17: Sam (born on the 17th). It's too bad she's not in Boston to draw me a cold bath after the race like she does after my long runs - I think she really enjoys the pain in my face when I get in.
Mile 18: Runners Roost. I've been on the Runner's Roost Race Team for 2 years and they are amazingling supportive. I'm honored to represent them in this event.
Mile 19: My step-Mom Diana (born on the 19th). My dad has found a phenomenal soul mate. Diana's kindness and generosity towards everyone in our family amazes me.
Mile 20: 9News (9 was taken, so going for the Channel 20 tie in here) I've had a lot of support from my co-workers and I hope to bring them back a good report!
Mile 21: Runner's Edge of the Rockies. For this marathon I trained with a local running group and realized that I really enjoy running with others. Thank you David & Julie.
Mile 22: SkirtSports and Nicole DeBoom. For years I've been a big fan of Boulder'sSkirtSports and their founder Nicole DeBoom has become a great friend. I'll be wearing a marathon skirt Monday and by Mile 22, I hope it's flapping in the breeze as I'm cruising down towards the finish.
Mile 23: Dr. Ann Gill. When I was 23 years old I was attempting grad school at CSU. I was miserable and Dr. Gill told me to stop wasting my time with school and instead spend it on my young radio career. That advice worked out well and she's still a dear friend.
Mile 24: My niece Mia. Zoe's younger sister who I just want to squeeze every time I see her. Always grinning and I need to think about her happy face with 2 miles to go.
Mile 25: My dad Ed (born on the 25th). I bet he thought I was forgetting him. Not a chance - I'm pretty sure deep down he thinks his daughter is crazy, but he never shows and has always stood behind me.
Mile 26: Mike. At this point I'll be very ready to see my husband of almost 16 years and culminate another one of our amazing journeys together.
Mile .2: D-Mac. The marathon is 26.2 miles and I'm dedicating the .2 to a former co-worker at KBPI, Darren McKee. He ran Boston last year and I owe this year to him. Thanks D-Mac, it was the least I could do (literally) :)