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Run, Mommy, Run!

Saturday was the big day--my very first 5K run. It was in Midway, KY and the course took us right through that quaint, adorable little town and alongside some beautiful horse farms. I was a bundle of nerves because I hadn't kept up with my training as I had hoped. I was just praying I would finish without getting sick or peeing my pants or falling victim to whatever other disaster I could think of.

My mom was in town just for Friday night and since she was driving right past Midway on her way back to her conference, she dropped me off at 7:30 AM sharp. I felt like a little kid on the first day of school. What in the hell was I thinking? Time for a deep breath and some positive self-talk. I'm an adult. I can do this myself. My wise mother left me with these words of encouragement, "You've given birth, you can do anything." I love her.

I registered and spent the next 50 minutes checking things out and warming up. I peed at 8 so I would be sure to cross that worry off my list. I was in place at 8:25. For some crazy reason, they ended up running 15 minutes late and by 8:45 I had to pee again. Crap! I knew it! Before I had time to figure out what I was going to do, the train whistle sounded and we were off. I was in the very back of the running group with only walkers behind me. After a few minutes I forgot about my need for the bathroom and just focused on making it through the race.

I tried my best not to get discouraged when I saw that runners both twice my age and half my age had reached the turn-around point and were heading back while I was still huffing along the first leg. In order to keep some stamina, my plan was to stick with intervals of running five minutes and walking one. However, after a few of those, I realized that I wasn't really all that tired and decided to abandon my plan and just go for it the rest of the way.

A few moments later, I was right behind a man probably in his late 60's or early 70's who was making his way at a pace just barely slower than mine. When I was next to him I asked how he was doing and he responded, "Great! How are you?" I told him I was doing OK. "Isn't this just beautiful?" He asked me with genuine enthusiasm and a huge smile. I agreed and told him this was my first race. "Oh, good for you!" I thanked him and told him I just hoped I could finish. "Yeah," he said, "Really, that's all you can do. Just try and run the course." I smiled, thanked him again and told him to have a good day as I continued on. Wow. That little conversation made it all worth it.

I finished at exactly 36 minutes, so my average pace was 12 minute miles. Not too good, but not too bad either. I reached my goal to do a 5K and I even made it to the bathroom! Hooray!!! I can't wait to try again and push myself a bit farther. I suppose that is the beauty of running... Really, the only person you're competing against is yourself and sometimes that is the hardest person to beat.

4 comments:

Seth Nalley said...

Congrats....What a great accomplishment, you must be so proud. Reading this makes me want to get up off my butt and do something like that....Thanks for sharing.

Kate said...

Way to go Sis! I'm so proud of you. I'll be thinking of you tonight when I'm running my intervals on the treadmill!

sara said...

Trust me, if I can do it, anyone can. A year ago I was almost completely sedentary after having Addie and then the appendectomy. Seth, didn't you have one of those as well? Maybe that will be the new thing--have an appendectomy and then one year later, run a 5K!

The Alrikabi's said...

I'm so proud of you! I think a 12 minute mile is Great!!! But that is coming from a lady who, well, doesn't run.