It’s no secret I run a lot, but I don’t race a lot. (Insert jokes about what ‘a lot’ may mean to each of us and then move on. In the world of people I know, I probably race some of the least amount of official ‘races’). I especially don’t do much small distance racing (again…….subject to opinion!). So, when my name was ‘drawn’ for a free entry into the Kona, Wicked Run, I was more scared than excited.
The mileage wasn’t what threw my confidence, it was the speed at which I should probably try to run a 10k, which is not in my comfort zone AT ALL!
(Notice the girl in the camo? Now SHE’S fast and the starting line would be the last time I would see her as she literally ran away with the win! Congrats DTRW Stephanie!)
Clearly, a race at the end of October can be tricky, the weather starting to change, second guessing clothes, it’s a couple weeks after my marathon PR so I was still in recovery mode, yet I wanted to do my Downtown Runners and Walkers Group proud! I love this group like family and didn’t want to disappoint them.
So, I toed the line, and put it all out there, with a smile. I was lucky enough to “run” across some friends who were out cheering on the course, and in fact, you can see me waiving to them in the video that Michigan Runner produced.
Check out Groovy Girl Go at 56-58 seconds in center screen.
To run a 10 K or probably even a 5k, may be some of the toughest running a person can do. (Luckily I was treated at the start line with friends and the most adorable dance troop ‘per-race’ entertainment I’ve ever seen!) It’s fast, it’s fast, and you can’t breathe. Sometimes I wonder if this perception of running is why some people don’t really enjoy running. Every minute I was out on that course my lungs were burning and I was gasping for breathe. At one point I was trying to keep up with a ‘fast-boy’ and I wonder if he didn’t have the PR of his life just because he had to run away from me, to not hear me gasping. He probably thought if he stayed by me any longer he may end up having to call 911.
I was inspiring to see a couple of friends along the running course that I was able to wave and laugh with, and of course kept me honest. I couldn’t fall apart (or at least into too many pieces) in front of people I liked and respected. So I kept at it……mile 2……mile 3……mile 4…….I knew this is where i usually start to find my ‘groovy,’ ………and then on to mile 5, where I thought I might puke…….but anyone can do a final mile….. Right? …….and there it was…….the finish line.
I was going back and forth with a cape wearing fast boy. I was giving it my all while I tried to stay lose and digging deep in order to keep up with that caped boy!
Nearing the end, for one last time, I saw our DTRW Ken Davenport, who wouldn’t let me live down any puking on the course, so I dug even deeper, pulled out one final smile and kicked it in to the finish line.
It may be no big deal for most runners, but when the director of the race came up to me and told me I was lady #5 I was completely caught off guard. I didn’t have to dig too deep to smile anymore…this was a sincerely fun moment. I know it’s something not everyone gets to experience and I didn’t take it for granted. I know that I often try and play ‘placing’ off as not important, but truth be told, I work hard. I get up early before my daughter wakes, I put miles in when the temp dips below 0, I don’t go out so I can use my babysitter money for running time, I say no to fast-food, I say yes to running-cations, and I was proud of running hard………and my coffee tastes just a little bit better in the mug I won!
Groovy Girls Go………Wickedly Fast For Fifth