I envisioned the night and morning before my race to go something like this. Eat dinner. Lounge around watching TV and stretching. Going to bed and sleeping with probably a little tossing and turning. Wake up. Eat PB toast and coffee. Poop. Head to the race.
This is how it actually went. Eat dinner. Lounge around watching TV and stretching. Suddenly get really nauseous. Puke A LOT in an hour time frame. Ingest large quantities of antiemetic medications, some of which stayed down, some of which didn’t. Drift in and out of consciousness which resulted in my husband removing my glasses once I felt asleep. Wake up with a still sour stomach. Moan about missing the race. Listen to encouraging words from my husband. Sip water that stayed down. Got my race kit on. Took another antiemetic pill. Headed to the race.
Yeah…less than ideal.
I don’t remember exactly what my husband told me, but what stuck with me is that I would regret not trying. I kept the water down. I didn’t feel totally awful. And I knew I would definitely regret not trying after ten weeks of training.
I threw my goal in the trash. I knew I couldn’t break 30 minutes feeling the way that I did. But I was going to run. I was going to RACE. I was going to do something I had never done before. And I did it.
Run for the Roses includes a one mile race and a 5K race. It’s a small local race paired with the city of Rose Hill’s Fall Festival. This year was the 29th annual Run for the Roses. The course is a fast, flat, out and back south on the main drag of the city.
I started out in the front part of the pack and was quickly passed. I started out too fast, running the first quarter mile at an under 9 min pace. My Garmin probably thought someone else was wearing it. Slow down, deep breaths. I got my pace down to my fast training pace, but I slipped down slower once I hit the start of mile 3. My splits ended up being 9:23, 10:12, 10:55. Started out too fast…duh. I ended up running side by side with another woman. She eventually passed me in the last sprint. I was also passed by one of the stroller pushers…dang, she sprinted the last quarter mile like a badass. I did manage to pass one young boy who obviously bonked. I hate to admit it, but I enjoyed passing him…knowing in my head that a 31-year-old mom was beating the high schooler.
I crossed the finish line and listened to the beep of my chip registering. It was such a surreal experience. I’ve watched my husband cross a lot of finish lines, but this time it was me. I did it…on my own. I stepped out of my comfort zone and ran my race, ran my pace. And I can’t wait until the next one.
Of course, the best part was not what I accomplished, but what my six-year-old did. He loves to run. He loves to race. When his daddy nudged him out of bed that morning, the first word out of his mouth was “RACE!” He finished 3rd in his age group. My hero.