Saturday, August 10, 2013

Rotary Ramble

I should begin by saying I didn't start running until I was in my 40's and before today I had never participated in any kind of sporting or athletic event.  That is why I really can't believe that I ran in a 5K today, didn't have to walk any of it, and finished in 33 minutes and 40 seconds. That time is so shocking to me, I had to keep looking at my watch when people asked because it just didn't seem possible!  Everyone (online and in person) kept telling me I could do it and that it would be fun.  And guess what?  I did it and it was fun!

I'm now going to go into a lot of details about my day.  Feel free to just look at the pictures (that my husband was so nice to take)!

Look how relaxed I am!

We were up at 5 this morning so that we could be out the door shortly after 6.  I was very surprised to not feel nervous at all and had no problem eating breakfast.  Yesterday my stomach was full of butterflies but they disappeared sometime during the night.  I wasn't about to question it!  Unfortunately, I have problems with motion sickness and this race was about an hour away so half way there I started not to feel well.  It didn't get too bad though and before I knew it, we were out of the car and I was fine again.

Registration was a bit of a mess.  I got my stuff fine but just as we walked into the gym, someone came up to my daughter and her teammate (after seeing their shirts) and said that their coach had already picked up their bags so they only needed to get their numbers.  Kayleigh got her number and told them she didn't need a bag.  Angelic on the other hand, didn't get anything.  We were confused about why the coach would get one number and not the other and had a feeling he didn't have Kayleigh on his list but we went with what they told us at registration.

The three of us went down the finish straight-away to check it out since it was Angelic's first year.  I ran back for my warm up and immediately decided that it was not as cool as they predicted and changed into shorts.  A text message came through from other teammates so they headed off to find them and Bill and I just walked around.
Kayleigh and Angelic before the race.

There were two stressful things that happened minutes before start time.  First, the expressway was closed down and they were re-routing traffic through this little town and right through the start line.  They said they could hold off the race a few minutes but then the traffic would just have to wait.  Unfortunately, the closure caused a lot of runners to get there late so they came in and basically went straight to the start line.  I was very happy we left so early!  The other thing was that Kayleigh's coach did not have her bag so she had to rush in, get it from registration and then run out to our car and still get a warm up in.  It was more confusion than she would have liked but it all worked out in the end.
Kayleigh and Angelic are off!

I got in line way in the back with the other 11 minute/mile runners.  I was trying to look around for someone who looked like a good person to pace off of.  There were a couple people right by me and based on the parts of their conversation I could overhear, I thought they'd be a good option.

And here I come.  Why do I look like a giant?

The race started really abruptly because we were so far back, we didn't realize they were even giving instructions.  All of a sudden everyone just started running.  The second I started moving, I felt pretty good.  It wasn't very far down the road before you come to the first turn and by that point, we had all slotted into a decent position.  I've never run in a huge group like that so it was a little unnerving to try and weave through people.  It probably helped in the long run though because it kept me from starting off too fast.
Kayleigh (with Angelic hiding behind her) right before the 1 mile point.

I reached the 1 mile mark without too much trouble but still I was surprised to see that my time was 10:36 even with the slow start.  I tried to slow down a little and fell in next to someone who I then stuck with through most of the race.  The first part of the race is a really long straight road so I was happy once we turned.  Plus this road was shaded so that was extra nice.  My cousins used to live at the end of the road so from this point, I was very familiar with the route.  I was very shocked with how fast we got to the next turn. The road seemed so much longer when we were kids!

A few minutes later, here I come.  Still smiling and you can tell I'm running because my hair is swinging!

Right after the turn we hit the two mile mark and my husband seemed to pop out of nowhere with the camera.  I was shocked to see him because there isn't really any short cuts through this route so I couldn't figure out how he got there when I had passed him earlier on the other end of the route (turns out he just ran really fast!).  I did my second mile in 11:02  which is still pretty fast for me.  At this point, the person I had been running with fell off but I still felt OK.  Every time I saw someone stop to walk it just motivated me to keep going.

The girls are starting to look tired and Kayleigh's hair has broke free from it's bun!

Not sure why I'm still smiling.  Maybe by this point I'm delirious.

After a couple more turns, I was on the same road as the finish line.  Unfortunately there are a couple hills to get through before you are done.  Now I was starting to hurt and I was really tired.  The 3 mile marker seemed to be so far away but I finally reached it in 11:02 (again!).  At this point I wanted to stop so bad but I could see the finish line and, even worse, I could hear cheering.  There was no way I could stop!

Ok, now I'm getting tired.

Apparently Kayleigh and Angelic came down the road after they finished to find me.  Kayleigh said she was running next to me on the side of the road but I didn't even see her until Angelic said "Good job Mom"!  Nice that I'm spotting Angelic but not my own daughter!  I was obviously reaching my limit at this point.
Seriously - where is that finish line?

I wanted so badly to sprint at the end but my legs just wouldn't cooperate.  I was never so happy as the moment I stepped across that finish line.  Bill, Kayleigh and Angelic quickly found me and told me that both of them had got their best times as well.  Kayleigh said she had a really good final sprint and I was a little upset I couldn't see it.

My attempt at a sprint.

Thank goodness!  Stopping my watch and staring in shock at the time.

I quickly found somewhere to sit since I was starting to feel like my legs were going to buckle.  I was out of breath, too, but after a few minutes, I was feeling almost normal again.  I really couldn't believe it was over and I had done it!  Some of Kayleigh's other teammates came over at that point and they tried to convince me to do a cool down run with them.  I told them "That run across the finish line was my last running step for today"!

Bill went over to check the final rankings.  Turns out I was 8th place in the 40-44 age group.  What?!  Granted we don't know at this point how many people were in this group but since there were about 750 runners total, I'm hoping it was more than 10!  One of Kayleigh's teammates got 3rd in her age group and her coach's son (who is about 11 years old) got 2nd in his.

Bill road his bike home so I had to drive but felt pretty good.  Until around 2 this afternoon, that is, when I fell asleep on the couch!  I didn't feel too bad though.  Kayleigh has done this a lot more than me but shortly after getting home, we found her asleep while holding the tablet in her hands and a video still playing!  I guess she was a little tired!

So in closing I would say that if anyone is questioning whether they should sign up for a 5K, I'm going to say YES YOU SHOULD! (But you may not want to plan anything for the rest of the day!)