I just realized I’ve ran three 5K’s in 3 different states in 2 years. This last one was rough. I trained for it, actually ran in the hot and humid late June and July heat and made sure I made it up the steep hill by my house without stopping and not walking it. I continued doing my own personal training plan which included indoor intervals on the treadmill, then a long run, then just running for endurance. The heat didn’t get to me, if anything the bugs along the path by the creek did. I began to see more people along the path, making running after work more comfortable, seeing the same faces and cyclists and that chipmunk that my stepdad released from his imprisonment after snatching peaches off their tree. My next goal was personal, this was one of the main reasons why I was running and why I was running this event. Left known only to me and a choice amount of others I had to do this. It wasn’t about beating my previous times for a personal record it was to prove a point, at least to me. On this overcast humid day, I set out with a goal. I had a healthy breakfast of oatmeal and berries, lunch was a spinach and feta cheese omelette, my choice of snack about 90 minutes prior was a banana. That seemed to work well the last few weeks for me. Hydration was not an issue, I love water.
The event was not well organized, we did not line up by anticipated finish times similar to the previous races I’ve run in. I was stuck in a sea of jogging strollers, walkers and runners of all shapes and sizes. This was a free for all. Needless to say my usual mantra of finding someone to pass went out the window until I dodged the traffic in my way. “Walkers to the right” I yelled before reaching the half mile marker, and I continued to yell to help fellow runners who were coming up behind me. I was pissed, this was going to screw up my plan. Somewhere along the way I just gave up the mantra and just ran, I had heavy tunes in my head, a good pace going and then I found my target. I had to pass this woman in an orange tank top. I don’t know why she became my victim but it worked, then I had to pass this old man, and so on. Anyone that started with me I didn’t see along the way, our team was scattered. As I reached my sprinting point my energy was almost depleted from the amount of hills we had to conquer. After the last corner we turned I finally saw the time at the finish line and I had to hurry. I was close to beating my time from the Albany race at least in my head but I was still unsure where I sat with my personal goal. I kicked it up a notch and let the tank run dry as I passed the finish. It was only then when I saw my friend that I said, “Holy $$$$, that was f-in hard!” She was pretty sure I reached my goal, but we had to be sure and I wouldn’t know for sure until the results were in. The only reassurance I had was a friend telling me that I had this in the bag, that my training was going to pay off.
I must say I beat the pavement hard on this one, my body aches, I’m still exhausted two days later and I do not curse the person that ever put running in my head. I actually thank them because I am faster, I have more endurance thanks to this new found cardio and yes, I conquered my personal goal. Dad would be proud. Who knows you may see me again next year.