Surprising Becky at the Ogden Marathon

So, yeah. I ran the Ogden Marathon yesterday. This has been a secret that I’ve kept since January. I did that because I wanted to surprise my friend Becky who was running Ogden as her first marathon. If there is anything I love more than running with friends, it’s surprising friends.

And, as you can see it was definitely a surprise …

Keeping this secret for the last four months was extremely difficult. The only people I told I was running the marathon was my family and then a select few people. Heck, I didn’t even tell my co-workers until Thursday. But, then again, they probably think a marathon is just three miles.

What was even more difficult was keeping this a secret on Facebook and my blog. I feel like I’ve somewhat deceived you all. I really was registered for the Ironwill Half Marathon until I decided to surprise Becky. That part was true. But, I ended up selling my spot to my cousin for two breakfasts at Penny Ann’s Cafe (they own it) and probably jelly beans? (I can’t remember the exact arrangement? All I am excited about is Penny Ann’s).

Dinner at Rooster’s in Ogden.

Then I got a few of my other running friends behind it to help me pull off the surprise. The Ridings picked up my packet from the Expo and then Christy allowed me to stay with the group at a cabin in Eden we rented for the night. Luckily, Becky stayed with Sonja in Ogden so the surprise wasn’t spoiled.

But, I told Becky that I was staying with a friend in Ogden who was running Ironwill with me and then we’d drive down to Camp Williams after we saw everyone else off of the bus. Plus, I wanted to give her some homemade RKs for her run and give her something that Susette gave me for my first marathon.

My first marathon with Susette.

That surprise was that I was going to run the marathon with her. When I ran my first marathon in July 2012, Susette showed up at mile 16 and ran the rest of the race with me. She was a godsend to me. She saved my run. And, I was always told myself that I wanted to pay that back. Or, pay it forward …

Plus, knowing Becky this marathon training was a great sacrifice for her. I have the utmost respect for all marathoners, but especially mothers. How they are able to balance their home life, kids and running is amazing to me. And, I know this wasn’t easy for her.

But, it’s been fun to be a part of this journey with Becky. Seeing her apprehension and doubt turn into confidence and strength has made me fall in love with running all over again. That is the one thing I love about the marathon. It changes you. It strengthens you. It lifts you up.

Surprising Becky at the starting line.

After I ran the St. George Marathon back in 2012 I really doubted that I wanted to run another marathon. They just take SO much out of you. But, being able to be a part of the journey with others who are going through the process for the first time … it renews you, it motivates you and inspires you! And, that’s really motivated me to run this marathon.

The original plan was to meet up at the bus stop to give Becky a card with my bib in it. But, in the mass of confusion she and others got shoved onto a bus before I could surprise her. So, I ended up hopping on a us to figure out a way to surprise her. I ended up having the announcer at the starting line page Becky Wood and then I surprised her there as you can see in the video above. It wasn’t as I envisioned it to be revealed, but it was perfect. I really couldn’t let her run this herself. I had to run with her.

Becky and I celebrating our marathon finish!

I will recap my race tomorrow, but needless to say, it was a challenge. The heat was bad and slowed pretty much everyone down. Becky nearly had the paramedics pull her off the course because she almost fainted, but Katheryn was able to keep her on the course and after resting for a few minutes she got back on the course. Then I ran into her and finished the race with those two. It was a great race in that regard. But, that heat was NO fun.

I am just glad that Becky was able to finish her marathon. She put SO much into preparing for this moment. But, I am extremely proud of her and I am happy that I was able to surprise her as well. She’s not only a great running friend, but friend period.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s race recap. But, congratulations to all the runners who finished the race … it was a TOUGH course yesterday!



  1. So awesome ! I ran the half after a friend couldn’t run and sure wished I had someone waiting for me at the finish …it was my first half or anything more than a 5k ever! But hubby and kids were at soccer, and I knew that when I agreed to do it a week ago. Knowing how I felt I can only imagine how your friend felt. Just awesome

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  4. Thanks Sarah! It was a fun surprise. And, TOUGH to keep secret for over four months!

    How did you do with your half marathon? The first one always holds a special place in your heart! When is your next race?

  5. You are the luckiest Becky in the world! This was so much fun setting up! Even if you got pushed onto a bus that derailed the initial plan! πŸ™‚


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