Today was a HUGE milestone for me. Not because I haven't run 3.1 miles before but because I have never run in a race before willingly. I have mentioned getting out of P.E. in school because I didn't want to run laps. That was me thirty years ago. Last year at this time I wasn't even considering running. I was just trying to get up and do a 20 minute workout video three times a week to get the weight off. I wanted to blog about today while it was still fresh in my mind because of the feelings I experienced.
I had a really hard time sleeping last night. I suppose the excitement was just too much. I set my alarm for 5:30 because I didn't think I could get myself up any earlier but I was out of bed by 5:15. I knew I would not eat or drink anything before the race so I didn't have to worry about time for those things. The race officials suggested we arrive by 6. We should have left at 5:30 but it was hard getting my son out of bed that early since he likes to stay up late. Note for next year and other races: leave earlier. We were right before the exit when traffic came to a stand still. We reached that point around 6:15. Traffic was only moving a short distance at a time. When we finally got up to our exit the police had blocked it off. We headed to the next one but it was blocked off, too. Before we got to an exit that was open we came close, and I mean CLOSE to hitting a car in front of us. John was able to swerve and miss it by a hair. It scared me so badly because it's truly a miracle that we didn't crash our new Jeep and miss the race completely. We didn't get into the parking lot until 7:15 and then we had to walk what seemed like an entire mile to get where we gathered for the race. The race was supposed to start at 7:30 but I think they understood how backed up the traffic was and gave us a few minutes longer. They did allow late arrives to get in the last heap of runners.
Once I was surrounded by all the other runners the excitement started coming back. (The near death experience kind of put a damper on things.) It was pretty cold but I knew I wouldn't be comfortable wearing the hoodie that they gave us. I made sure my ears were covered up so they wouldn't hurt. I warmed up pretty quickly once I was running. I was actually comfortable once I was in the corral. Once again, I think that was due to the excitement. I was in the next to last group to run so I stood and talked to a few ladies while we were waiting. That is always fun for me. I love getting to meet new people.
When we reached the start line and begin to run I was excited but trying not to run over people or get run over myself. I was in a group with a lot of walkers even though it said no walkers. I didn't feel strange about going around people and even getting on the curb to go around like I saw other people doing. I had to do that often. I thought I might have to stop often to get a drink or walk but after I had run the first mile and found out I did it in 12 minutes (over a minute faster than I had been running) that pushed me forward to keep going without quitting. The more I ran the more I wanted to run. There was an up hill overpass that was challenging but instead of getting slower I pushed myself to go faster up that hill. I did slow to a walk two or three times for only about five seconds to take a drink but never considered walking any part of the race.
When I finally went under the finish line I had a huge smile on my face. I was looking for my husband and son but they were farther up waiting for me. I saw them before they saw me. They were such great sports because they were freezing cold while I had been running and didn't feel the cold anymore. That is why they are going to run WITH me next year instead of standing on the sidelines. After the race they gave out mugs with hot cocoa and fondue. The chocolate was wonderful! I made a big mess with it but it was scrumptious anyway. I think that was one of the neatest parts of this race, the free hoodie and the chocolate afterwards. It was a fun race.
Now I am looking into running my next race. I am actually trying to plan my runs for the whole year. I know that I have to make a plan or I will be tempted to quit. But I can SEE the changes in myself and my body in the last year. And I am excited to see what I can do this year and what changes I will have made. Looking back gives a person perspective and vision for the future. If I can train and over come asthma related issues that have kept me from running in the past then I can keep training and make some longer strides towards bigger goals. My next goal really is just to keep improving my time in the 5K. I am not sure I will want to run the 15K in this race next year but who knows. Maybe by 2015 a 15K will be something I will be ready for. One thing I want to make sure of is that every race I run has either a fun theme like this one or is a good cause. I don't want to just run a race to run it. I want the race to mean something to me.
37 min 34 sec
PaceOverallAge GroupSex12 min 06 sec3285184 of 4292317 of 4732
I can't wait for the next adventure in a healthy lifestyle. Share with me your adventures on the road to health.
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