Conquering Iron Mountain…One Step at a Time!

A little over a year ago, I decided to take on yet another challenge of redefining my life at “50” – I determined it was time to run. Or maybe just walk. Purposefully. Intentionally. Consistently. After all, it was Edward W. Bok who said, “At fifty I found I was still beginning to live.”

So I registered for my first 5k, The Carillon Classic 5k Run/Walk at Bok Tower Gardens.

Gulp. Somehow I had forgotten that the Gardens are located on a mountain. Or for folks who find 298 feet above sea level to be considered a small hill, the course would have several “inclines” to conquer. Still, I knew this would be a challenge worth the effort – for who could ask for a more beautiful location of one’s first 5k than at Bok Tower Gardens. With new running shoes, a 5k training app downloaded to my smartphone and an upbeat playlist for motivation, I set out to begin my course of preparation to conquer Iron Mountain.

The weeks leading up to the race I learned to pace myself as well as push myself to walk faster, run and still breath, and to understand the importance of stretching both before and after my runs (which were really more of walks with some jogging mixed in for good measure, hardy breathing and calorie burning!). With each passing day, especially on those days when I didn’t want to train, I reminded myself that with each step I was on my way not to just run my first 5k but to conquer a mountain, Iron Mountain. Step by step. One foot in front of the other. One step at a time.

Race Day came and I was ready, or at least ready enough for a novice. Donning my wings and tutu along with my daughter, the “Garden Fairies” were ready for the inaugural run of the Carillon Classic. We had a blast. While my time wasn’t exactly noteworthy, the fact that I finished the race most certainly was. The course was trying at times but yet the beauty of the surroundings, the camaraderie of my fellow runners encouraging me on, and the melodies coming from the Tower were enough to keep me focused and motivated to cross the finish line. I had done it…I not only ran my first 5k, I had conquered Iron Mountain!

Want to conquer Iron Mountain for yourself? Join us at the 2013 Carillon Classic on Saturday, May 25th. You can register here:

Check out the Carillon Classic Facebook page for updates and more:

You can also follow Amy Wiggins, a PR professional and self-proclaimed “non-runner” as she trains for the Carillon Classic using the “Couch to 5k” program. Her updates are found on the Carillon Classic website at

And yes, I’ll be donning my wings and tutu once again so look for me and say hello!