Marcia Sheer: Training for and Completing My First 5K

Marcia Sheer

Marcia Sheer: Training for and Completing My First 5K

A bit about Marcia beyond running: Marcia has made it her life goal to inspire others and help them realize their full potential, and you can see her passion for learning and helping others learn when she speaks. She is part of WISE: Women Influencing Success in Energy, the women’s group at Ameren, where she has worked for 35 years. Marcia was just one of four women who received the annual award given to someone who embodies the values of empowering employees through education and development by offering resources, mentorship, networking opportunities and creating awareness in the community. As you continue to hear Marcia’s story, you will understand why she fits the WISE Women award, and why she is a true Girl on the Run.

Why I decided to run: My granddaughter has participated in Girls on the Run for the past few seasons at her school, and I love seeing her face when she talks about meeting her Girls on the Run goal. So, I decided that it was time I joined her. I started training in secret, so that I could surprise my daughter and granddaughter on November 15th!

Marcia’s Story: Once I decided to start training to run the Girls on the Run 5K, I realized that there was a lot I needed to learn. I have always walked a lot, but have never run even a mile! I looked up different training programs, and found a Couch to 5K program, which I decided was what I needed. Once I was getting closer to the end and the training was getting harder, I started telling my coworkers, my friends, everyone that wasn’t my daughter or granddaughter, that my goal was to surprise my granddaughter and run the 5K with her. This way, I couldn’t chicken out, since everyone knew I was going to do it.

Throughout the training, I trained inside on a treadmill, so when it came time to run outside in the below freezing weather, I was a bit nervous. But, I was so excited about surprising my granddaughter, that I piled on the warm clothes and my husband and I made our way to their house to pick them up for the race.   I kept repeating to myself what Doreen Dodson, honorary race chair said, “You have worked hard toward your goal of running a 5K, and in the process become stronger physically and mentally, developing self-confidence that is so important for young women.  And what if you’re nervous at the start?  Or the race doesn’t go perfectly for you?  Just think of what you have accomplished, that you set a goal, trained, tried hard, and did it!  The most important thing is your willingness to set a goal and go for it.  You should all feel very proud of yourselves for taking on this challenge.” Both my daughter and granddaughter were very surprised to hear I was running with them. They both exclaimed, “Awesome!”  As we lined up at the starting line, it was great to hear from Doreen again, a reminder that I could do it! We took off and my running buddies were great in pushing me along and keeping me moving. While they ran a bit faster than me, they waited for me at the finish line, and then we all sprinted back to the car for warmth. Later, I thought to myself, “Why couldn’t I harness this speed during the race?”

Going into work the Monday after completing the 5K, I got to tell my boss, my coworkers, and my friends that I did it; I ran my first 5K! I hung my medal in my office with a sign that says “Ask me about Girls on the Run!” to inspire others to push themselves, and to remind everyone that we can do it, we can meet our goals.

One wish for Girls on the Run: I think the lessons that the girls get from Girls on the Run are what we all need to hear as women, especially those of us that are adults. I want all women and girls to believe in themselves, that they can set their mind to something and do it, and that they can be the best they can be.