This story was sponsored by Full Circle. All opinions are my own.
Two weeks ago, I ran the New York City marathon. That still seems surreal to say.
I’ll admit it, a few months ago when I saw that my final post of this partnership with Full Circle would be themed “I ran the New York City marathon” I got a little nervous.
Would I be writing about actually running a marathon? Would it have to be changed to “I got injured before a marathon” or “I dropped out of a marathon”? I had decided no matter what the outcome, I would accept it and be proud of it. If for no other reason, I accepted the challenge and committed to the life changes it required.
Being on the course was an adventure.
Being among thousands of other people who had been through the same grueling weeks or months in training brought a sense of collective camaraderie. Seeing human beings of all ages, shapes and sizes, and physical capabilities coming together for the same purpose gave me a profound objectivity. I left my own anxieties and mental spiraling behind and became acutely aware that we all have a story; in fact, mine pale in comparison to many of those on the course that day.
When I watch the videos of myself crossing the finish line I saw myself bring my hands to my face in disbelief. I actually don’t remember doing that, but I do remember that when I saw the finish line, for the very first time, I felt like I was actually going to finish a marathon. I couldn’t believe it. I was just as surprised as anyone else. Partially, because I set my expectations low (to avoid great disappointment), and also because I was going against a few odds.
I learned that making a change and setting a goal isn’t something reserved for the elite or the experts. A marathon was obviously a HUGE undertaking. It is certainly not what is required to illustrate the difference small changes can make. Whether it is committing to walk to the end of the block, speak in front of a large group of people, Or simply get up out of bed and brush your teeth every day- accepting the challenge to make small changes takes bravery, and passion. On a very grand scale, running a marathon showed me what cumulative small commitments can do.
The only way to change the world is for many of us to do things imperfectly with good intentions.
The mission and voice of Full Circle is truly this very concept. They want you to know that you don’t have to be all or nothing. You don’t have to be an expert or an elitist. Their #startwithasponge campaign encourages making the small changes when and where you can.
You guys know that I am transparent about partnerships and I try to align with companies that have solid messaging, but I really wanted to tell you what a dream it has been to work with Full Circle. They were not controlling of my content and wanted me to convey my authentic journey in a way that reflects their brand mission, which I highly valued. I was able to experience training and running a marathon and have the freedom to tell the story in my own way. If you believe in corporate social responsibility and supporting companies who care about the greater good, you should really consider Full Circle Home and what they have to offer.