It’s rare….but it happens. Sometimes I just don’t want to run. This typically does not happen on race day….but it did this year. The morning of the Turkey Trot. I was sick over the weekend….like really sick….and had trouble eating all week. So on Thursday morning when my alarm rudely awoke me from glorious sleep I was unhappy. I didn't want to run….certainly didn't want to race….and just plain did not want to get up.
Ok, so you know that’s not the end of the story….clearly I didn't just stay in bed. I got up slowly and got myself ready for the race. It was cold….brutally cold so I opted for an extra layer. My buddy drove me to the race and we were definitely on the early side for the packet pickup. It was a little different this year. Instead of having numbers already assigned they had people with computers assigning them as you checked in. It was pretty convenient. They just had to search for your name….pick up the top bib on the pile and then type it in….rather than sorting through bibs for a specific number.
After getting my bib/chip and my t-shirt we quickly made our way back to the warm car. Even then I still didn't want to run. It took forever to admit that I was doing it and for me to put my bib on my shirt. Finally about 30 minutes before the start I decided we should get out and get adjusted to the cold and hit the bathrooms. The porta potties weren't in the normal location so I ended up going inside the community center and waiting in line for the real bathrooms. I was good with this…warmth and real bathroom….yes please and thank you.
It was then time to make my way to the start line. The starting corral is fenced off so I had to walk on the inside while my buddy walked along the outside. A few minutes before the start time I gave him my sweatshirt and said good bye. I still wondered what I was doing….I hadn't even bothered to warm up.
Last year I PR’d this race…..it’s still my current 5k PR. (I haven’t run that many this year and I haven’t been training for them specifically.) I definitely wasn't expecting to PR this year….not the way I was feeling. And I didn't even think I would go for it. I decided I really wanted to focus on starting slower….so I did just that…and I let the PR go in the first mile…..I know I will never negative split enough to get it back later in the race.
The start was a mess…..people do not line up based on ability and some people were already walking in the first quarter mile. I started fast but forced myself to slow down and maintain a slower pace. I’m glad I did….it helped me feel good throughout the entire race. Once I started running I remembered that I actually do like running and I definitely like racing so I wasn't so upset about having to do it. By the time I made the first turn I was really into it and knew I was going to run a good race.
I made my way through the first half of the course and then passed through the water stop and tried to dodge the ice….it was so cold that the water was freezing to the road as people dropped the cups. For a cold 5k I definitely wasn't stopping for water. I made my way through the rolling hills with a few extremely short walk breaks to catch my breath. And then I took the final turn back towards the finish line. There is still a bit to go at that point and I kept just pacing myself. I was running hard (for me) and I knew I didn't have much left. I was speeding up a little but not much. As I passed my buddy who was spectating near the finish I give it a little tiny kick…..he was surprised to see me so soon. I used that little kick to the get to the finish line.
I was slower than last year….but I certainly knew that….I knew that when I let off during the first mile. But overall my time was quite good. I was dead tired ….but I was happy. It was a fun race. I ran well ….but didn't kill myself.
I made my way through the long fenced area to get some water and food. I was tired but for once didn't just collapse on the ground. I grabbed a bottle of water and a banana and then we headed to the car. It was time to get a move on with the Thanksgiving festivities. About half way home the race high kicked in and I enjoyed that for a while.
So yeah….I’m glad I got up and ran that race…..even though I had been sick….and it was super cold….and staying in bed seemed nice.
I regret that run…..said no one…ever.