On the night before my race, I just wanted to take a quick second (because I REALLY need to be sleeping), to say thank you. Thank you. Everyone, THANK YOU! I will let you know how tomorrow goes!! But in the meantime, this is the letter my mom wrote me this week, and I have her permission to share it with all of you. Enjoy 🙂


Dear Jennifer,
One day, after several months of training, I realized there were so many similarities between training for a marathon, and living a good life.
Here are some of the things I observed, and a few life lessons I saw in action,  while watching you train for the New York Marathon.
“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.” 
  —  Johann Wolfgang von Goethe 
Go You!
 What an amazing goal you set for yourself, to run the NY marathon!!  That’s a huge commitment, and you seemed to do it without hesitation…  And the obstacle of not being able to gain entry without making a significant fund raising commitment is also 
Amazing… You met the task the way you approach most things in life.. With excitement, enthusiasm,  and an attitude that you will find a way to be successful.
Enjoy the journey
When you started your training, it made me smile to see you and David pack up his fishing poles and tackle 
And head toward the pond.. You ran while he fished… All the while David was cheering you along… Stuff like that warms a mothers heart . 🙂
Believing in yourself, even if others may doubt you 
It’s easy for people, even if they truly are well meaning, to question  your decision to challenge yourself by running a marathon, because  it is such an out there goal. I truly admire your can do attitude, and your willingness to keep your eye on the 26.2, regardless of how hard other people might think it will be for you.
Never give up
Your willingness to continually take your training a week at a time, and deal with mental blocks and physical challenges as they arise, all the while remaining committed to your goal.
Even when the chips were stacked against you a few times, you didn’t throw in the towel … as a matter of fact, once the challenging incident subsided (pain, injury, hitting a wall) you seemed to be more committed than ever. 
Remember when you called me at 730 am to come pick you up in Seaside? you were done … you hit a wall…
 I thought getting in the car and driving you back would leave you with a bigger mental hurdle to conquer. However, the look on aunt Jennifer’s face when I threw 2 bikes in the car and asked her to drive me to you so you and I could bike back together… Her words said sure, but her face said “are you joking?? When was the last time you rode a bike, let alone ride a bike for 7 miles??”
Ask for help when you need it
Another thing happened that morning when Aunt Jennifer was driving me to you… she said to me “you should be out there helping her”
I assumed you wanted to do it yourself, and you would ask me if you wanted me to come with you.  However, I followed Aunt Jen’s advice and  I was pleasantly surprised when you not only welcomed, but greatly appreciated the company while you were training.  In addition, by helping you, I helped myself… I biked over 30 miles this summer at the jersey shore. (thank  you for that)
Whether it was Joe going out on a run with you, or David  jumping in to keep you company for a mile here and there or Dad , David and Joe cheering you on, helping  you finish your run around centennial,
 Or your friends running with you on the treadmill…
 or family/friends riding bikes along side you while you ran at the beach…
Asking for help is a good thing… 
btw, Dad and I  rEally enjoyed helping you on your long runs around glenwood… Circling the blocks, bringing you water, Gatorade and mint power bars 🙂
When you fall down, you’ve got to get back up and keep on going… 
Just like you did the day you face planted around the Washington Monuments… enough said… 🙂
It’s usually better to get the hardest things done as early as possible in a day… like getting up at 6am in Alabama to run in 105 degree temperatures..
Sometimes you’ve got to run in the rain. (I can’t remember If any if your runs actually were in the rain… but if you did, this is what I would say 🙂
Little  things can make a big difference… 
Whether its new running shoes, a cute outfit, or sparkly headbands… They can add energy  to an otherwise ordinary run.
 The universe bends to the committed soul… 
When you set your plan motion, the universe, and the people around you come together to help support your goal… Like Joe  showing up with a cold drink  and pancakes just when you needed it… or dad driving ahead of you, holding a Gatorade out the car window for you to grab as you ran by…and repeating that for several miles… or even that day that I ran a little stretch with you :0)..: that was definitely divine intervention!
Ice and Swimming poolsROCK!
Whether its crushed and in a tall glass of water, as a refreshing drink, or in a bag, bringing relief to a sore muscle… Ice is wonderful!
Jumping in Granny’s pool after your run in 105 degree weather, and napping on a raft, makes everything better!
Sometimes you need to push yourself, and sometimes you need to take a break…
Listen carefully to your body, and your inner voice, and you will always know what the right thing is to do. 
FAITH is the most important thing.
Faith and belief in yourself are really important… 
However I believe having FAITH and trust in God is more important than ANYTHING we can ever do. 
Everything happens for a reason, and if you listen to  the voice of God within you , He will do AMAZING things through you. 🙂
Sometimes we can do everything right, and things don’t work out because of events that out of our control…
Like hurricane Sandy and the devastation that has turned over people’s lives in NY. But true to form you met this obstacle with tenacity and resilience and found yourself another race to run!!
Knowing whats within your power to change, and knowing whats out of your control can help you determine what to do next.
Jennifer, you are simply amazing and you have inspired me every step of the way.
You are extraordinary!

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