Ever since I moved to Indianapolis in 2012, Monumental has been a huge part of my life, something that I have participated in every year and big events in my life seem to coincide with the race.
The 2012 Monumental became my second ever 5k and the thing I remember most about that race is that it was the first time I got to experience shaving time off of a PR and I had run the entire thing without stopping. After that race, I decided to not only continue to push myself with running, but also to fully commit myself to adopting a healthier lifestyle and losing weight, as I had spent the vast majority of my life overweight. The 2013 Monumental became my first half marathon and I ran it 75 pounds lighter than the year before. In 2014 I pushed myself even further and ran my first full. It was also the race where my boyfriend, who had traveled from California to run it, finally asked me to be his girlfriend.
Since that time, I've run over 30 races, 10 of which have been half marathons, and 2 were fulls: both 2015 and 2016 Monumental. This past Saturday, at the 2016 Monumental full, even though I didn't end up hitting my goal time or PRing my race, I got the surprise of my life at the end. My boyfriend, running his sixth half (third at Monumental), surprised me after I finished by having my entire family, who live in Michigan, there and, in front of them and racers and spectators alike, got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. Being partially in shock because I had just run a marathon and partially in shock because he was asking me to marry him, I didn't answer right away, but when I finally realized what had happened, I was overjoyed to tell him yes, I would love to spend the rest of my life with him.
I'm planning on running the 2017 Monumental Marathon again and he's planning on running the 2017 Monumental Half Marathon so we can each complete our 4 year medal series. Since Monumental has coincided with such important events in our life, I'm excited to see what happens next year!