Sarah Hopkins – Half Marathon Runner

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I grew up playing soccer and always despised running!  As I grew older and life became crazier, I would look out the window as I drove and see so many runners and be envious, there they were taking time for themselves, by themselves running!

I began running in March of 2012. At the time my daughter, who is now 4 (5 in February) was 2 years old, I was working full time as the Bereavement Social Worker at Lourdes Hospice, taking care of my home, being a wife, tending to 2 dogs- basically taking care of everyone else, but myself.  I was not happy with how I felt physically or emotionally, so I started the Couch to 5k app.  Slowly but surely I progressed, but then in June, my runs that had started to get easier turned more challenging, I shortly thereafter found out I was pregnant with my son, who will be 2 in February.  By the time I had found out I was pregnant, I had already signed up for and been training for my first 5K- Parlor City, so I ran it- it was hot, humid- I finished it and threw up at the end!  I ran for a few more weeks and then unfortunately stopped.  I started running again about a month after Logan was born in March 2014.  I was training for and getting ready to run the Parlor City 5K again and in June I tore my gastrocnemius (calf muscle) so I ended up in a boot for 6 weeks. Once I was out of the boot I attempted to get back into running, but did not rehab my calf the way I should have so I continued to have pain. I got very involved in hot yoga at Yoga Body Shop and even did the 40 day revolution in January 2014.  Following the 40 day revolution I started to get bored with yoga and started to run again.  I trained and ran in a few 5Ks- running was going the best that it ever had for me until this past June, when I re-tore my gastrocnemius.  Again I was in the boot for 6 weeks, this time though I followed up and worked with a wonderful PT- Kristen Mooney, who slowly but surely got me back to running. Since then I have participated in my longest run- the Turkey Trot-5 miler.

I have stopped and started running- 3 times- I am hoping the third time is the charm!  Running for me= freedom. It is the only time of the day that I only have myself to answer to! No one needs me- no one is asking me to do anything. I am asking myself to do something, to put one foot in front of the other and to keeping moving!  I use my runs to plan things- my best most creative thinking happens on my runs! When I feel like I can’t run another step I think about some of the patients who I had the privilege of working with at Hospice and ask them to give me the strength to keep moving!

Currently,  I am married, with a 2 year old son, 5 year old daughter, a dog and a puppy. I teach in the MSW program at Binghamton University and continue to facilitate bereavement groups part time at Hospice.  How do I fit in running with all of this you may ask- lunch breaks are meant for running, not eating ( I can eat at my desk), 5 am on the treadmill, I make it work- running is scheduled into my day like a meeting or an appointment.  I try to run at least 4-5 times a week and fit in hot yoga 2 times a week!

While training the furthest I have run thus far is 8 miles! So only 5.1 more to go…(haha)! My goal for the Bridge Run Half Marathon is to finish, not throw up, not get reinjured (I will not wear the boot again!) not walk and average around 9:30-10 minute/mile.  I want my children to grow up knowing that taking care of yourself is not selfish- rather the best gift that you can give yourself! I want people to look at me and think if she can start running, so can I!

View My Blog Post Here!

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