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14 Miles for 14 Years ~ Abi’s Birthday Run 2018

14 Miles for 14 Years ~ Abi’s Birthday Run 2018

When we started Abi’s birthday run in 2013 we had no idea what it would turn into or how long we would keep it up. Here we are 6 years later and somehow the tradition continues.

We’ve has years we ran on the streets near our house, one year in Ohio when we were visiting family, and last year was on vacation in Gulf Shores. I actually wasn’t sure if we were going to do it this year because her training in June wasn’t ideal. She spent one week at camp and then another two weeks out with strep throat. Her longest run was 7 miles. It wasn’t very promising but she wanted to try.

This year July 1st was on a Sunday and we knew we would need to start early if we were going to try to beat some of the heat and make it to late service. We decided to run on the Arkansas River Trail so we wouldn’t have to deal with traffic and on the plus side it was much more scenic.

Even at a very relaxed pace this was one of her harder birthday runs. I carried 2 handheld water bottles so we could have water anytime and we took walking breaks when needed.

I’d say the hardest stretch was between miles 7 and 8, right after we turned around. We broke the run into small sections and focused on getting to the next checkpoint. Once we made it to mile 12 things got a little easier for Abi. We crossed the final bridge and finished.

Abi’s birthday run is a true test of perseverance. It’s all about finishing. Each year I remind her that this might be the hardest thing she does all year. At least I hope it is. I want her to know that she is strong and that she can do hard things.

A few other takeaways… running more than 7 miles would make things much better next time!! Also, we need to go somewhere a little cooler on July 1st!

So proud of my little girl and thankful to be her mother. When did my baby grow up?! It’s all going by way too fast!

11 Comments

  1. This is so cool and impressive! I bet her friends are in awe! When you first started this – did you mention the idea? And she trained for that I guess?

    1. I think I might have mentioned if she ever wanted to do it I would go with her- not knowing if it would be years down the road or not. When she started at age 9 she had 2 10k’s under her belt so it wasn’t too much of a stretch. She didn’t really train the first 2 years but after that we realized she needed a few bigger runs to prepare. This years training was rough due to going to camp for a week and then the whole strep throat ordeal. I told her if she wants to do this next year we really need 1 preferably 2 double digit runs beforehand.
      Tia Stone recently posted…Firecracker Fast 5k 2018My Profile

  2. I love how you guys do this every year… no matter how the pace is, how hard it is, how much of it you have to walk or stop, you are together and celebrating a tradition. Plus I bet she loves that she gets some hours to herself with her mom on her birthday every year- it’s something she can count on. Sure, one day you might have to do birthday Ks instead of miles, and I definitely would want to go somewhere cooler, but I hope you can always continue the tradition in some way! Maybe even a marathon (outside of Arkansas!) when she’s 26!

  3. What an awesome tradition. Happy belated birthday to Abi and Happy early 40th Birthday to you!!! It’s always a blessing to watch the Stone family in runner mode. Arkansas Runner Mom you should be proud that your family make so many others smile and proud to claim all of you as part of our community!!! May you be blessed with the running tradition that continues for many years and generation.

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