First, yes – Clearly I lost my mind long before the race actually started. Probably somewhere back around the time I entertained the thought of running 10 miles. Then this happened…
I actually showed up. To run. 10 Miles. In the rain. At 7:45 in the morning.
I didn’t end up with pneumonia, but I did finish. It’s a pretty funny story, actually – one you might not believe, but I swear every word of it is true…
Just shy of 400 of us showed up to run. Some were doing the 4 mile leg, some doing the 10. Why didn’t I sign up for the 4 again? Oh yea, peer pressure. It had been raining for a few days, and clearly still was. A good part of the run was along a greenway known to be prone to flooding. Fantastic. The first 7 miles were great. Muddy, but great. I had some issues with my breathing (asthma + humidity + running = problems). The extra distance I was adding with all of the puddle dodging wasn’t helping. I finally gave up on that and splashed my way straight through.
The wildlife was plentiful, including the deer that I nearly collided with. Had I been running full steam ahead, she would have smacked right into me. I had eased up already, having seen several bound across the path ahead of me. Thank goodness for that!
Somewhere between miles 7 and 8, CMPD (the local police) got tired of dealing with us apparently, shuffled the last of us stragglers to the sidewalk (did I mention I’m slow?), and ditched their posts. We were following the signs and sometime past mile 8 were stopped by someone and told we went the wrong way and were sent back the direction we came and told to take the other turn. After about a 1/2 mile of double back and 2 miles on the trail, I recognized where we were and knew we weren’t in the right place…. actually we were back around the mile 5 mark of the original course. I blame this on the race using double sided signs. We had arrows urging us on!
When my phone finally died, we were at 10.53 miles and we went for a while after that because with a dead phone I couldn’t call anyone! As it happens, the race director was riding the course, happened upon us, confirmed we had in fact done our 10+, called times in for us and gave us a ride back to cross the finish line. The company who organized the race was very apologetic about it (and upset with CMPD) and gave us some freebies and a few free race entries.
So, yes – my times sucked – but I finished a 10 mile race!
Don’t underestimate yourself… in running or in anything! 6 months ago I would have never dreamed I’d be able to finish 5 miles, let alone 10!
If you’re a runner, do you have any crazy running stories?