“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

I’m running my first 10K in less than 10 days. The starting line of that race is the end of my comfort zone.

I’m injured right now. My legs have been swollen for the last two days, and even the few seconds that I ran to the bus yesterday were painful.

So I may not be running the 10K. But whether I run, walk or hobble/crawl 6.2 miles to the finish line, I’m doing it.

Neale Donald Walsch said, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” I could give up all hope of doing this 10K, sulk in my room (like I’ve been doing for the last few days instead of cross-training) and feel comfortable doing what I’ve always done, which is absolutely nothing. I could remain idle for fear of failing.

Or I could suck it up, put on my I Am Made Of Guts t-shirt and give this 10K the best damn shot I can.

Joining the DetermiNation team and pledging to raise money for the American Cancer Society as I train for my first half-marathon is another huge step out of my comfort zone. Honestly, I don’t make friends very easily — I’m more inclined to spend time by myself than be social — and I generally feel uncomfortable asking people to donate money. But I was tired of saying “no” to things and decided to say “yes” for once. I decided to see what was on the other side of my hesitation.

So here I am, on the edge of my comfort zone, demoralized by my injury and unsure if this is all worth it. It would mean the world to me to know that some of you guys have my back.

I’m going to get all crafty and make a sign to pin on the back of my Guts shirt as I run/walk/hobble the 10K on April 17: “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” If anyone chooses to donate any amount – $5, $10, whatever – to my American Cancer Society fundraising efforts between now and April 16, I’d love to add their name or Tumblr name to that sign. You can visit this page to donate.

I don’t want any pity donations, but I’d love your genuine support. If you have my back, I’ll put you on my back, and I’ll crush 6.2 miles in whatever manner I’m capable of.

Even if you can’t or don’t want to donate, encouraging words are plenty welcome. Right now, anything helps.

So whaddaya say? Meet me at the end of your comfort zone. Let’s run/walk/hobble this one together.

Ahhh! Whose idea was it to run 8 miles again? Oh, yeah… mine.

Aaron and I set out for 7 miles on this cold, blustery day, and sure enough we hit a groove about a mile in. We both felt good still after 2.5 miles, so I said, “Do you want to run 8 miles? I mean, we might as well.” Done.

My left knee started hurting about halfway through and never got much better. I stopped to walk and massage it a few times, but it felt like it was grinding the whole time — ick. I hope this will get better with some rest and short, easy runs.

Navigating the stairs up and down my three-level townhouse on my worn-out legs is exciting, especially since my bedroom is on the third floor. I’ve settled on a wide-legged hobbling strategy, much like a crab walks. Now I’m all cozied up in my bed, contemplating never leaving it, let alone tackling those stairs again.

Also, my belly is full of tuna casserole (my fave), which I smartly assembled prior to the run, then popped in the oven immediately upon returning. Yum, yum, yum. After running 8 miles, it’s never tasted better.

EDIT: It’s not even funny how fast I was able to upload this run to my new laptop. Not. Even. Funny.