Back in June, my best friend Kristin asked me if I wanted to run a 10 mile race. On October 13, I did just that. The girl who at the time hadn’t run more than 1 mile for months, ran 10 whole miles. It was a personal running distance for me and I still have a hard time believing I actually did it. My “training” was a little unconventional. Of course my overzealous self printed a reasonable training plan, however, I did everything but follow the damn thing.
First of all, I moved. This was a good and bad thing for my training plan. Moving gave me great views such as Central Park and the West Side Highway, however, it also meant I moved! The stress of moving alone is enough to make anyone absolutely exhausted. In addition to that move came a new job, 65 miles away (each way) and in a different state. Not good for training during the week.
Second, all the travel. Oy! There was a time during the summer where I was traveling every other weekend and then that hectic schedule got even more hectic traveling every single weekend.
Third, all my travel cause me to get suuuuper sick. A cold, a sinus infection and even (a thankfully early caught) bout of Shingles.
What did all that mean? I ran sporadically, increasing mileage where I could and praying that my legs and my tummy would cooperate come race day.
On race day, I woke up at the crack of dawn to drive down to Mercer County Park, the race site. It was fairly chilly that morning (like 45ish degrees) but it wasn’t raining and I was damn happy about that. I met Kristin at around 6:45 and head over to the Jersey Girls Stay Strong race tent to get my bib and my stretch on. I was getting antsy thinking about running the distance since the race didn’t start until 8am, but I was glad I had an opportunity to use the bathroom, stretch and get my playlist ready before lining up.
At around 7:45 we began lining up and as 8 approached, slowly but surely the line in front of me got shorter and shorter until it was my time to start.
Honestly, the first mile flew by so quickly that I didn’t even think about it at all. When I saw the one mile sign, I was shocked and overwhelmed. Nine more to go. Miles 2-5 were fairly smooth as well. At every water station I was alternating between drinking water and drinking Gatorade and at mile 5 I stopped to eat some of my Strawberry ShotBloks. They seem to be the ONLY thing that doesn’t upset my stomach and I have to be careful with even those as sometimes, my tummy doesn’t feel so hot after long(er) runs.
After stopping to fuel and hydrate that was the first time I thought, holy crap, I have a whole ‘nother hour to go. I ran mile six slowly as I worked to pick up my stamina again and was fine until mile 6.5 when something flew into my eye causing me A LOT of pain. I ran threw it to mile 8 where there was no line at the port-a-potty and quickly hopped in to take a look at my eye with the mirror they (thankfully) had against the door. Once I got that thing out of my eye, hallelujah, I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. While miles 8-10 weren’t easy, I knew I was so close to the end that I couldn’t give up. And give up I did not. I crossed the finish line, not giving a damn about my time, just being so happy that I actually did it!
A few highlights from the day are below!
Lined up, waiting in my corral.
That I didn’t… lol… but I finished and I’m damn proud.
Me and Kristin holding our fairly heavy reddish-pink medals! Yay!
My goddaughter approved of the run and that just made my crossing the finish line that much sweeter. I mean, how can you not LOVE that adorable face?