I’m no Forrest Gump
Last Saturday was the morning of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5k and Katie and I had been fund-raising and training talking about for the last few months. We were asked to be at the race check in by 7:45am for a group photo which meant we needed to be there by 7:30 to give us time to find the group. Seeing as we had about a 30 minute drive to the venue and we had to drop Short Stack off at his grandma’s house so he could hang out there rather than the cold out-of-doors on the race route. All this early morning planning made it painfully obvious that we needed to be up and at it by 6 so we could eat a little something, and at the bare minimum be coherent enough to be able to put one foot in front of the other for 3.2 miles.
After the group photo, everyone was milling around waiting for the race to start. We assumed our positions in the “Over 9 minute mile” group, just ahead of the walkers. The announcement was made that the runners were off… our pack of runners slowly made our way to the starting line, eventually thinning out enough that I could get a decent jog going without feeling like I was going to get my feet tangled up with the person in front of me.
The course proved to be a little more of a surprise that I had anticipated. There was a GIANT hill at the beginning of the course, which you think is a great idea… get the hill out of the way early when you’re still fresh. The thing about this hill is, it’s like it was put there to beat you. To make you think twice about why you were out there in the first place. This hill was there to tell you to slow down and walk, but I went against all common sense and ran on. At the crest of the hill I felt as though the hardest part was behind me. Three hills later, I realized it was more of a challenge than I had anticipated.
I’m proud to say I ran the first two plus miles without slowing to walk. It wasn’t until about the two and a half mile area that I felt a slight twinge behind my left knee and needed to walk for a couple of minutes. Once that pain had either sub-sided or I was able to block it out of my mind, I finished the rest of the race at my jogger’s pace. I must admit, that while I did do some training this summer, I never made it a full 5k while on my training runs. The full distance was a bit of a surprise, but only in the sense that I hadn’t realized how close I was to making it the whole way. Here’s how I clocked in…
I haven’t decided yet if I want to run this race again next year or even another 5k someday. This is a great cause and I suggest you give it a go, even if you end up walking. You meet a lot of great people and it ended up being a pretty good time.