Saturday, December 01, 2012

2 years 22 months later

And I finally paid for and ran a 5K. I thought it was only 2ish years ago that I started my Couch to 5K training, but no, I found this post, and it was almost exactly 1 year 22 months ago! My doctor's office gave me a guilt trip about this 5 weeks ago, and I signed up for the Jingle Bells 5K 2 weeks ago. And immediately, started to regret it. I started to freak out. I began to mentally hyperventilate. Why? The reason lies in an event that happened in high school.

Every year, our school would have a sports meet. Now me? I've never been the sports type. I've always been slightly overweight, always loved my foods, always preferred to curl up on a couch with a book and some snacks than go out and run around. So, this one year, in my last year of high school, my 2 best friends then convinced me to do a race with them. It wasn't a speed race, we had to walk with a clay pot on top of our heads. Imagine me standing there with my two bestest friends in the whole wide world, excited to share in this fun event. The starting gun goes off. I take my first step. The pot falls off. The pot breaks. I'm disqualified. I run to a bathroom and cry big ugly tears.

Now tell me you understand my deep set in the gut fear of public competitions, specially that involves running.

But, this time, I resolved to do it. I announced it on Facebook. I told family. I told coworkers. I told the nurse who does the triage at my doctor's office. I might even have told the checkout cashier at Wegman's. I kept running 3-4 days a week on the treadmill. I ran outside at my parents' place the day after Thanksgiving to get an idea of the difference between running on a treadmill and running outside. I finished my C25K training program on Friday, a day before the run. I felt good. Then I felt afraid. Then I felt silly. I went to sleep.  Dreamed about the race. Nothing negative, just general dreams related to running. Woke up refreshed. Still nervous but ready to get it over with.

I got dressed, sprayed some pain relief on my right ankle and knee (either a sprain or torn ligament), wrapped an Ace bandage around it and got ready to go. Jeff and Oli came with me. The whole Jeff kept telling me not to worry, I'd be fine. We get there in enough time to park, get some food ... Figure out its freeeeeeeezing! 8 minutes before the run's supposed to begin, I need the bathroom. Of course! Get in line for the portapotty. 2 minutes to spare and I get close to the starting line. I take a hit on my inhaler as a precaution. I put my headphones on, hit the button to connect them to my phone and ... Nothing! I forgot to sync my brand new phone last night to my headphones. I can't run without my music, this is a disaster and it hasn't even started. Ok ok it wasn't a disaster, they connected. I wave bye to Oli, who immediately starts crying, lower lip out! And everyone around me starts running. And, my internal monologue begins.

Waiting for it to begin, not realizing I am with the hardcore runners
I start running. I'm worrying about Oli.  I'm running and thinking, shoot I was supposed to do a warm up walk. Can I stop running and walk? No stupid you can't, look around, everyone around you is running. The walkers were in the back. Ugh, fine, I'll keep running. Am I running too slow? Why does everyone seem to be passing me? Why is there a car coming towards us? Are these people lost? Wait, is that a hill already? Darn it, why didn't I check how much up and down was on this course? Ok I can do this. Run, run, run, one foot in front of the other. What the hell is this song? It's so slow, ok changed, this is better. Or maybe I should switch to my audio book. I think I was on chapter 25, about 5 minutes in. Would that be better than music? Am I breathing too loud? Can people hear my grunting? Oh look, a mile done, woohoo. Wonder where the water station is. Should I just run and drink or stop? Maybe I should walk a bit. Or maybe I'll run a little more. Yayyy water, garb it while you are running, dont spill dont spill. There's somebody with a trash bag, say thanks. Oh my gosh, another hill. Should I walk up it? Nah just keep running. Oooh right leg's feeling a little jelly like. I've done 1.9 miles, maybe I should walk a bit. Ok it's been a couple minutes, think I can run again. There's the 2 mile mark, start running. Ugh, slow song again. I shouldn't have deleted my running playlist. I should create one again. Hey, I think I passed that woman twice already. And that's ok because a 10 year old just passed me. great. Another hill? why didn't they warn us this whole route was uphill? Oh look doggies. wonder what they're thinking about all of us. Don't look at the phone to see how far you've gone in the last 15 seconds. Wait till that bend in the course. Ok, made it, just wait till that turn. Ok, wait till you've made it past the bridge and all the water. Keep running, don't look don't look. Ugh, only half a mile. But, let's send Jeff a text to say I am a half mile out from the finish line. Damn slow song again, I really should have listened to people when they said I should have a running playlist. HEY LOOK the 3 mile sign. Only 0.1 to go, I can sprint this. How nice for these folks to stand by the sidelines and cheer us on. It really does make a difference. Geez, what if they're thinking, did this fatass run the whole way? Where is Jeff? Why can't I see him. keep running keep running. There he is. There's the finish thing, does that say 40 something? Yay think I did it in 41 minutes and some change.

End my internal monologue. I raised my arms in the air whopped as Jeff took some shots. I DID IT! I ran almost all of the course. All uphill. Barefoot. In 3 feet of snow. Ok fine it wasn't all uphill, and I wasn't barefoot and there was no snow. I feel awesome! I did it and I didn't die. And you know what? I might even do another one :)

Some photos from the end:

almost there

Made it through, woot woot
He doesn't look too impressed with mommy's performance

he had fun while I ran
He doesn't seem to mind the cold


gorillabuns said...

I'm proud of you! I couldn't walk 1/4 of it!

Syl said...

you totally could :)