I ran my first 5K yesterday and lived to tell. I have been training for about two months and the race was yesterday. It was harder than I though, but easier than I thought. I know I don’t make sense, so let me explain.
I hate exercising. I really do. There are no words to describe the level of hatedislike hate that I have for exercise. This is not a new thing. I have been like this all my life. Still, last year I decided that instead of doing a New Year’s resolution I would set myself a goal. The organization I work for sponsors a 5K in February (rain, sun or snow) so I signed up for it (you can read more about this crazy decision here).
Any-hoo… After staying put all week due to a nasty head cold, I manage to get over it (read: I beat the bug into submission with antibiotics). Still, I was concerned about the lack of practice during the week. I took advantage of the beautiful day (60 degrees!) and since the boys were fighting over Sunshine’s attention, we went for a walk at a local park. Turns out that this park has trails, and the adventurer in me (which really means that the Caribbean in me was enjoying the sun after weeks of not seeing it – Where have you been, old friend?!) decided that we would take some of the trails. It was VERY nice. Sunshine and I walked hand in hand through some gardens, as Skywalker and Mini-me ran ahead and discovered sticks, stones and had leaf races in the stream. It was SO nice, that I didn’t notice how much we were walking, nor that we were walking on pretty steep hills – that’s Western NC for you…
Sunday morning, my right calf was letting me know its displeasure over the hike with the wrong shoes. Still, I donned my running outfit, packed my cheerleaders in the car, and off we went.
We met Ricky-Martin-brother at the race. He gave me a little pep-talk before the race and off we went. I mean, off he went and I followed.
I am not going to lie to you. It was hard. Have I mentioned that there are no flat surfaces in Western North Carolina? You think they are, but no such luck. So I had to run most of this race on an incline. With a sore calf. I had to stop to walk a couple of times to stretch my leg and didn’t feel too guilty about it- until an old lady speed-walked RIGHT PAST ME. That was it. The gauntlet was thrown. I have my suspicions that this lady doesn’t have a life as busy as mine and that she has plenty of time to exercise (and has probably been doing it for longer than two months) but to WALK past me? Oh, it was SO on!
So I found my secondfourth fifth wind and off I went. Ricky-Martin-brother had encouraged me 15 minutes before (as he ran in the opposite direction) and I knew I could do it.
As I made the last turn, I saw the finish line and then saw my fresh-as-a-cucumber brother (can you detect the bitterness yet?) waving at me. I looked at the other side of the finish line and there they were: Sunshine, Skywalker and Mini-me… cheering me on! And all of a sudden, I picked up the pace and finished… and I wasn’t the last one either.
I looked at my time and I beat my training time by 10 minutes. I was tired. I was proud. My new goal: finish a 5K by running it the entire way and a 10K before the end of the year. That’s if I can get my legs to respond again…