Last night, I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do my 5k. My husband told me that he had to work. I was planning on him watching our boys for me while I ran. After much scrambling and some tears on my part (never thought I’d cry about NOT being able to run), we figured out a plan, but that meant my finish line cheering squad wasn’t there. Of course this gave me the chance to start to doubt whether I should be doing it at all. But I got up this morning and headed out. It wasn’t like I had planned. It was just me and some of my running buddy’s family.
I wasn’t nearly as nervous as I thought I would be. I was excited to put on my bib and line up.
I started out the strongest I have so far since I started running about 4 weeks ago. I was able to run/job for almost the whole first mile without stopping to walk. I had made it almost to the first mile when people started passing me heading back.
It was nice to hear the encouragement from the runners who were heading back. It made me want to keep moving. At times I was jogging so slow there were people walking faster than I was “running.”
I struggled today. Every time we have run so far, it has been cold, this morning it was about 50 degrees and sunny. About a half mile in I wished I had left my sweatshirt at the start line. I usually try to run telephone poles, but today those poles seemed so far apart. If it hadn’t been for the motivation of the other runners along the way, I might have just given up and walked the whole thing.
About a quarter mile from the turn around point, I heard my running buddy (she’s been like my running trainer, she was crazy today, running the 5k with a 25 pound sand bag on her shoulders), yelling, “Come on Beth! You can do it! Let’s go!” At that point I was struggling pretty bad. It felt like I would never make it to the half way point. With her encouragement I started running again and managed to run to about the turn around.
The way back seemed so much shorter. I had a woman in front of me who was speed walking. She would pass me when I was walking, then I would pass her when I was jogging. It kept me moving. If she started to get too far ahead of me, I would start to jog again and get a ways ahead of her. This motivated me until I neared the end of the race, and my buddy met me to finish the race with me.
Her mom, her aunt and her daughter all cheered for me as they came into view. I can’t express how much it meant to me that they were there cheering for me. I had so badly wanted my hubby and my boys there, and I know that her family didn’t come for me, but they hung around until I finished. I am so thankful to them for that.
After the race I checked my voicemail and had 2 messages. One from my mother in law, the other from my father in law. They both told me how proud they were and had wished me luck. It really meant a lot to know they were with me in spirit.
While I didn’t finish first, in fact I was pretty close to last, I did it! I did it for myself and by myself! My time was a long 48:46. Not fast by any means, but it was better than where I was a few months ago.
Next week, I’m doing another 5k, and my goal is to shave at least a minute off that time. I know I can do it, and this time, my boys will be at the finish line to cheer me on. They are, after all, the reason I want to get healthy in the first place.