About a week ago, Amy mentioned a local 5K that she and her husband Jake planned to run for their Friday "Date Night." Yes, they are kooky enough to consider running a 5K together "Date Night." The weather has been completely crappy around here for over a week, complete with tornadoes, hail and days-on-end of rain, so when she mentioned the race I was hesitant. Pick a reason: horrible weather, lack of confidence in my 5K-readiness (having only "officially" reached Week 7 of my 9-Week iPhone app training program), general nervousness. Yeah, any of those will do.
But she's very convincing. And before I knew it I was registered for my very first 5K. A week before my OTHER very first 5K.
And why SHOULDN'T it have a cow theme?!
I swore Amy and Jake to secrecy. If I collapse halfway through this thing, it never happened. Got it? No one else knows about this.
See, Jake and Amy are REAL runners. They run half marathons and marathon relays. For gosh sakes, they are the kind of people who run 5Ks for Date Night!
I, on the other hand, am "a person who runs." I'm cool with that. Learning to like it, actually.
So. Race Day. The weather broke a bit and it didn't rain ALL day Friday, but I started psyching myself up for a very rainy race. Ugh. As race time approached, it was looking pretty gloomy out, but we headed to the park to make the best of it.
Colt thought I might need some help attaching my timing chip. Overall, he wasn't wild about my running away in the opposite direction, but he eventually settled down and cheered for me from the sidelines.
And here we are before the race! Jake and Amy – and me. I was optimistically still wearing my iPod sleeve, but it was looking stormy enough that I took it off before the race started.
It was sprinkling a little as the gun went off and I was just sure the sky was about to open up and storm/hail/tornado all over my very first 5K experience. But, shockingly, it held off. A few drops here and there, but no real rain. And certainly not the hail storm we were anticipating.
So I toured 5 kilometers worth of East Fayetteville, then headed toward the finish line. I had never actually run the entire 5K distance before so my legs were talkin' to me for the last few minutes of the race, but it felt good. Lack of music was a bummer but not a deal-breaker. I survived.
Here I am headed to the finish line – photos courtesy of my coach and cheering section.
Yah! I finished! Honestly, that was the goal. I'd never covered that distance before so I set a goal of FINISHING.Here we are post-race, ginormous water bottles in hand.
Amy is fancy and won her age division! And then she convinced the race organizers to give me a cow trophy for my very first race!
Otherwise, no trophy for me. Ha! I'm not breaking any land speed records here folks. Just crossing the finish line.
All things considered, I'm hoping to break 30 minutes this Saturday at the Race for the Cure. Oh, and I've broken Jake and Amy of their vow of silence. I suppose since I didn't collapse or get hit in the head with hailstones, it's safe to tell our friends about our wild and crazy Friday night!
Yes, I'm still running the 5K Ozark Race for the Cure. This Saturday. And while I initially worried the Cow Paddy might take some of the fire out of me for that race, I'm now so glad I will have done both. Knowing what to expect and having some emotional and psychological confidence will go a long way.
Slow and steady wins FINISHES the race.