happiest mile

With 2022 in the rearview mirror, it’s a delight to reflect back over running accomplishments and favorite events; but it also made us wonder: Is there one mile over the course of your running career that brought you the most joy? We asked some of our BAMRbassadors to tell us about their happiest mile, and Jaime Taylor chimes in today.

Jaime, tell us about your running history. I did not start running until 13 years ago, at age 35! Growing up, my family focused on the arts, and sports were never even watched in our home. My husband, however, was super sporty and ran his first 1/2 marathon in 2008. I had always wanted to run, but was sidelined with what I later learned was asthma. In 2010 I decided to start training for a half-marathon with my husband. Thanks to my fantastic doctor’s help, I was able to get my asthma under control, and I was hooked on running. 

I have since run 55 half-marathons and 7 marathons. I moved into triathlon and completed 7 half Ironman races and 2 full Ironman races. I am now focusing on Ultra Marathons! I just love the freedom of running. I love that running requires mainly my shoes and myself, and I can go anywhere in any weather to do it. It’s where I do my best thinking and where I let go of whatever is bothering me. 

Was it easy to narrow down your happiest mile or was it hard to choose? I had a hard time deciding on my most memorable mile, simply because the Ironman experience is truly once in a lifetime. However, the best part of Ironman is that final chute, not the final mile. The NYC Marathon in 2016 was FULL of memorable miles and a bucket-list race. 

happiest mile

Jaime and her husband at the start of the race.

Which mile on the course was your happiest? The mile that stands out to me the most was around mile 10 as you arrive in Brooklyn. The road narrows a bit through the neighborhoods, and there is a slight downhill that allows you to really witness the sea of runners before you. The streets were lined with thousands of spectators, cheering on the runners and offering anything from Hershey Kisses to bacon, Vaseline on tongue depressors, even an occasional beer. A band was playing Sweet Caroline and they were truly talented. The entire crowd, runners included, sang along loudly. Heads bobbed up and down in sync to the music, everyone adjusting their stride to the beat. In perfect rhythm, everyone slowed to scream Bom, Bom, Bommmmm and So Good! So Good! So Good! It was such a magical moment, I found myself wanting to stay for the party. I forgot about time, pace, splits, and just soaked in the experience. In that moment, we all came together in pure joy.

What advice do you have for other mother runners? While I did not go into this race with any time goals or expectations, I will say that my competitive nature started to take hold of me early on. Navigating through the crowd irritated me, having to slow sometimes to a snail’s pace. It wasn’t until this mile that I realized I was missing out on what was really important. I was doing a bucket-list race that I had tried getting into for 6 years, so I switched gears and was able to relax and truly enjoy the experience.

Pick a bucket-list race to shoot for, and focus on enjoying the experience over trying to have your best or even your average finishing time. Make eye-contact with the spectators, give high-fives, thank the policemen, sing, dance a little (or a lot!), take a shot, eat the bacon, and pocket all the snacks for later!

Have a mile that included music?
Tell us about it in the comments.

Want more happy miles in 2023? Check out Many Happy Miles.