The Tale of the Half Marathon that was On Fire

Have you ever had one of those moments where you felt as if you could run forever? For me, this was my most recent half marathon, the Silicon Valley Half.

Listen to “The Tale of the Half Marathon that was On Fire” read aloud by the author.

Disclaimer: I received an entry to Silicon Valley Half to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review, find, and write race reviews!

Race Morning

“Faith is remembering in the darkness what we have seen in the light.”

This is one of the many quotes that stopped me in my tracks of my most recent race. The kind of quote that required me to get out my phone and type it in my notes so I wouldn’t forget it.

When running a virtual solo half marathon, there are tips you must follow to help you get to your homemade finish line. One of the tips is planning to run the race so that you’re not running in the heat of the day, especially when you live somewhere where the temps are still close to 100 degrees in September.

I, therefore, left my house a little after 5am to beat the heat. I carefully planned my course to be an out and back course. I’m not a huge fan of looped courses. Those can get quite boring!

The opposite of boring is what the Silicon Valley Half offered their runners. One of the features of the virtual Silicon Valley Half that I found quite intriguing was their partnership with PWR Lab, a Silicon Valley digital platform that helps runners of any level to perform optimally, to create a Real Virtual Racing experience unlike any other! They provided runners a couple of real, fast courses for each distance in Silicon Valley as well as one in San Francisco so runners could run their best while also comparing themselves directly to others on their own time from Friday, September 18 – Sunday, September 27.

This feature truly sets Silicon Valley half apart from other virtual races. Sadly, I was not able to participate in this real virtual racing experience. Instead, I chose to run on my own in my hometown while listening to “On Fire” by John O’Leary.

Run On Fire

Throughout John O’Leary’s book, he discusses his journey from death bed of a burn unit to rehabilitation and then to motivational speaker. In vivid details he recounts the fateful day that radically changed the trajectory of both his and his family’s lives. One can not read, or in my case listen to, the book without feeling your life radically transform.

As I was running my virtual Silicon Valley Half Marathon, I felt energized and grateful.

I felt gratitude for the ability to go out and move 13.1 miles. I felt grateful for where God has brought me (out of an abusive marriage, through several failed IVF attempts, and finding my self confidence and health through running).


At the end of my run I celebrated. I celebrated that “I can”. If I could tell you anything, I’d tell you that “you can” too. ⁣You can…

  • Find the light in the midst of the darkness. ⁣
  • Exercise even in the midst of a busy life. ⁣
  • Practice self care even while taking care of a house full of children. ⁣
  • Choose joy. ⁣

⁣What are you celebrating today that “YOU CAN” do? Tell me in the comments below.

Love Stephanie of
The Tale of the Half Marathon that was On Fire


Christian, wife, mom/stepmom, no meat athlete, runner, teacher

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