Monday, April 15, 2013

Completed: One 10K

We did it! We ran the 10k!

If you can believe it, I actually finished the entire race without stopping. It was at once awful, thrilling and exhausting. I am so proud and glad that I did it, but, boy, am I glad that its over.

Its no fun to have something like 6.2 miles (!!) and hills (!!!) hanging over your head for weeks. Especially when the farthest you have ever run in your entire life was 5 miles and that was on a tread mill, without inclines, with water at the ready, with HVAC, with Andy Griffith playing on the TV immediately in front of you, and with a .25 mile break after the first 2 miles.

I thought that surely I was screwed.

You see, the training sort of took a back seat to, well, eating chocolate, catching up on Hells Kitchen, not cleaning the house and other such wonderful excuses as Junior League and my selfless volunteer work. Obviously, I was busy................

So, after taking a two week break from running (which means I didn't run AT ALL), I decided the Sunday before the race that I should probably start training again. My training was a disaster. I managed 3.4 on Sunday; 3.4 on Tuesday and a measly 2.8 on Thursday. I was DOOMED.

Skip ahead to Friday night, Cap and I are carbing it up and I realize that I am an idiot and the course that I thought we were running was indeed NOT the course we would be running. The course set for our torture was a winding path, up and down hills through gorgeous country. But, HILLS. I had been training for months on the treadmill and then for the last week on flat as flat can be ground.

At that point, it was all over for me.

So, I put on my sleuth hat and decided to research the slowest runner from last year's race. They came in at 94 minutes. I then figured that if I could run 4 miles in 50 mins. that I would be able to walk the remaining 2.2 miles in about 30 mins. Perfect. I would still finish faster than last year's slowest runner. This was my game plan going into Saturday.

Skip to the wee hours of Saturday. Its 4am. I haven't slept a wink--tossing and turning and cowtailing to my suddenly bottomless bladder. Then, Saturday looked more like Doomsday than a let's-frolic-through-the-fields-on-an-invigorating-6.2-mile-jaunt.

Cue terror.

Skip to Saturday morning, 8:52am. The race start time has been moved to 9:10, owing to the lengthy line snaking its way out of the women's restroom. Of course, Cap and I were smack in the middle of it. I began to size up the competition. I am ashamed to admit that my sizing-up-the-competition consisted of a comparison of thigh circumferences and ass widths. Yes, I judged how fast people would be able to run from the size of their dairyers and other appendages.

Yeah, yeah. I am a terrible person.

How terrible? It totally boosted my confidence. That terrible.

Human beings are honestly the worst. Or, maybe just me?

Horrible Person. This is me sizing up the competition and also how excited I am to run.

Skip to 9:08am. We are standing at the starting line. IT IS EFFING FREEZING. Its 40 degrees and so windy (because we live on top of mountains here). I really don't do well with cold. My body begins to convulse in erratic shivers as my teeth chatter uncontrollably. I am sure that my body will expend all of its little-bit of energy attempting to fight off hypothermia before the race even begins. Also, the cold makes my eyes water and nose run, so that my shirt sleeves were soaked with snot and tears within seconds.

I was the picture of health and beauty, I tell you.

I mean, take another gander at the lovely picture above. Don't you see what W saw 4+ years ago?!

Skip to 9:10am and we are off. Thank God. We take it slow as that was our strategy. My teeth are still chattering so hard I thought they might shatter. People of all shapes and sizes are passing us left and right. My favorite was the 80+ year old man in short-shorts that would make your Grandma blush. At least we were distracted.

Skip to .75 miles in. We are ascending our first windy hills and my teeth have finally stopped chattering to be replaced by something much, much worse.

DISCLAIMER: Things are about to get Running Triple X Rated up in here.

The squeamish should leave now. Fair warning!

Because of the bitter temperatures and blowing wind, my sinuses decided to dispel all of their sinus-y fluid down the back of my throat--a waterfall of mucus that nearly drowned me and then produced the foulest of the foul. Thick, sticky and clear mucus formed a globule on the back of my tongue and would not budge for anything. I tried to swallow it. HUGE mistake. I nearly strangled myself. But not to worry. The gag reflex has its pluses and can come in very useful at times. I managed to force it out of my windpipe with the most unearthly grunt-groan-cough-like-a-cat-with-a-furball-worthy hack. I quickly looked around to make sure that everyone within ear shot was wearing headphones. Phew. They were.

I decided to leave the mucus and formulate a new game plan.

Skip to 1.5 miles in. I am still cradling that mucus glob on the back of my tongue and have finally found myself in a new group of people to disgust. I decide its go-time. I consider spitting, weighing my options. Option 1: Move over to the side of the road, bend down and spit the champion of spits while still maintaining my stride. I've never been very graceful. I think that it could end badly, but brace myself to proceed with the plan. But then, I consider how sticky it is and can just see myself attempting to spit and it coming right back--splat--in my face like a paddle ball. See image below.

I decide to move on from Option 1.


Option 2: I get the brilliant idea to just claw it out of my mouth and smear it down the front of my shirt to match my snotty, tear-stained arms. But then I figure that I would probably just succeed in biting off a few fingers in the process, so I decide to risk my life again and attempt o swallow it.

And, it actually worked! Success!

Skip to 3 miles in and we are approaching the water station. I wanted to cry. (By the way, Cap and I are still running together at this point.) I grab a cup, and Cap, slightly ahead of me at this point, grabs one and just keeps on going.

Hold up. I am not coordinated enough for that crap. But not wanting to fall behind or lose momentum, I figure that if I can swallow a mucus globule, I can manage a few sips of water mid-stride. In my first attempt, I bring the cup towards my face, which for some dumb, unexplained reason signaled to my feet that they should begin to hop--you know, like a show pony. That was when the first and then second wave of water crashed down upon me and splashed everywhere except in my mouth. But not to be discouraged, I managed to stop my hopping feet, took a deep breath and braced myself for Attempt #2. I brought the cup towards my mouth and with a little head maneuvering and lip protruding managed to get a sizable amount of water in my mouth.

Before that point, I hadn't considered what I would actually do with the water once I got it in. You see, in a perfect world, I would have just swallowed and enjoyed the refreshment. But I was halfway through running-hell, a place that requires most orifices to gulp in oxygen in the hopes of, well, continuing to run. So, when you take away one of the most important oxygen-gulping orifices, you find yourself, eyes bulging and lungs exploding, in big trouble. I couldn't swallow the water for fear of drowning myself, yet I lacked the coordination to properly expel the water from my mouth with a simple side-spit.

What other choice did I have but to let it dribble out of the corners of my mouth and leak down my front?

NONE. I had no other choice. And so, that is exactly what happened.

Skip to 200 feet from the finish line and Cap is about a minute ahead of me having left my gross ass in the dust. I don't blame her one bit.

Who wants to run 6.2 miles next to a snotty, barking, drooling idiot?

At this point, I've made it, and I can't believe it. And all I really want to do is devour a large cheese pizza and 20 oz. coke, followed by a cheesecake, while watching a Kardashian marathon. But, I kept running, I even sped up a bit.

And then, I did it. I crossed the finish line. I ran 6.2 miles without stopping--the farthest in my life. And I am so proud of myself. (And Cap!)

I still don't know my official time, but based on Cap's watch, I came in at about 64 minutes.

What an accomplishment!

And this is what I looked like in all of my gorgeous, running glory:

Did you reach a running goal? Tell us about it!


**And only because I love you, dear reader, did I post these horrifying pictures of me at my worst. 

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