Calling Lisa just a ‘Runner’ may be an understatement. I connected with Lisa virtually after last December’s Reggae Marathon. She and a group of ladies were down for the race weekend. I met some of her group who were staying at our hotel but unfortunately I didn’t meet Lisa in person. Since then we’ve become Facebook Friends and spoken on the phone. I’m looking forward to finally meeting Lisa in person at the Reggae Marathon Pasta Party Friday night. Oh, and did I mention that she’s coming to Negril this December with over 160 people!
Meet List Laws…
I started running in at the age of 49, in June 2012. I was at the nail salon and a segment on our local Long Island News 12 came on about black woment running, featuring a running group called Black Girls Run! I said to myself “I can do that”, and as soon as I got home, I googled “Black Girls Run“…and joined.
At the time, I was very busy taking care of my mother, who suffered from Alzheimer’s and had had a stroke that left her right side paralyzed. I worked full time and was also in school. I considered running to be a way to relieve stress and clear my head.
My mother passed away at the end of September last year and one week later, I ran my first half at the Long Island Diva Half. I ran it for her because she would always say after I came home from a run “you are always running…you will do great”.
Before she passed away, I had signed up to run my first full marathon in December in … Negril , at the Reggae Marathon. I was totally unprepared because we had just been hit by Hurricane Sandy, and I missed a month of training, but I went anyway. The morning of the race, I put Mom’s picture on my back under my sports bra. She pushed me along when I felt I couldn’t make it any more. She did that with everything in my life, being the mom that she was.
At mile 18 I hit the wall. I kept going because failure was not an option. A woman who was a spectator and a guest at the hotel I was staying, the Tree House, saw me at mile 18 and next thing I knew, she started running along with me, making sure I ate, continued to pour water over me and made sure I stayed hydrated. She walked and ran with me….someone I just met!!! I was so moved by her kindness and encouragement. When I saw mile marker 25, I pulled mom’s picture out and, together, mom and I ran that last 1.10 mile. At mile marker 26, the woman said to me, “You finish this on your own …you’ve got this”.
As I crossed the finish line I remember lifting my hands in the air and saying “we did it mom…we did it.”
That experience was euphoric. Crossing the finish line to the cheers and smiling faces, even though it was a blur, made me feel like I was on top of the world!!! I remember the moment I realized that the running community is unique. I was sitting on the beach with my cousin, watching the sunset. I told him, people in this sport are competitive, yet encouraging. Everyone wants everyone to succeed. It doesn’t matter if you are running a 1:40 Half Marathon or a 3:00 Half Marathon. It is an individual success which is cheered on by everyone. No one wants to see anyone fail.
Since that race, my life has changed. My schedule revolves around my training. My vacations revolve around my races and I’m always looking for another race. This year I have done a mini Triathlon, a Duathlon and am about to do my first Sprint Triathlon in June, the NYC Aquaphore Olympic Triathlon in July, another Sprint Triathlon in August and a Half Iron Man Triathlon in September. I will have completed 6 Half Marathons by June 1 and have completed my 9th qualifying races and 1 volunteer race for my guaranteed entry for the New York City Marathon 2014 by June 8. I have many more halfs and a couple of fulls this year, however my sight is now set on completing an Iron Man Triathlon in 2014.
I turned 50 on May 24th! I wish I had known how much fun running, swimming and cycling could be 25 years ago. But I’m doing it now and I can truly say that I am enjoying every bit of it.
I’m Lisa. I’m 50 and am a marathoner, a duathlete and a triathlete….and I am living my life!!!
“Inspiring”, “Motivating”…just a few of the other words I’ll add to describe Lisa Law, Runner. See you in Negril in December Lisa.
Until next time…
Reggae Marathon RunninGuy (aka Sugar ‘Tuff Gong’ Bong)
Click here to register online for Reggae Marathon, December 7, 2013: Reggae Marathon Registration.
For more information check the Reggae Marathon Web Site.
Click here for more details on Reggae Marathon’s Abe Issa Award for Excellence.
This is a link to the Official Reggae Marathon 2012 Race Video.