Well, I said I would give it a shot and I did so. Last Saturday, starting at the high school track, through the praking lot, down through the Spirit trail, down “R” street, a couple twists and turn then back down River Road, back down the track and, 3.2 miles late, through the finishline in under thirty minutes at 29:19.
Previous to the beginning of the race, I picked someone who I was going to try and beat. I found the one guy who I thought would be no problem. Sadly, reality set in when I was huffing and puffing toward the high school finish line, and my target (number 51) finishing his cup of hot cocoa in the parkinglot.
I had dreaded throughout the whole run that I was going to be the last runner to cross the finishline. As I’m heading down the last quarter-mile on River Road, I notice one person who was slowly making a bid to upset my position. Once I crossed the finishline, I had made up some distance from my chaser. I totally out ran that elderly woman. To ease my fears, I was actually far from last and equally far from first. There were at least fifteen people who ran in after me. Thankfully, none of the 5k walkers finished before nor near me.
I was glad to be able to run this 5k, I would definitely run another one. One of the best parts was that I got to run with a buddy of mine, Garrett. We pushed each other to both join up and then tried to recruit others to join up. We were the solid ones, we stuck to our word and finished the race, although Garrett had finshed ahead of me. He got close to our goal of running the 5k in 27 minutes. Garrett was a lot closer than I was, through our first mile we kept our pace, running a 8:53. I had to slow down after that, I realized that my competitive nature was overpowering my pace and could have made the run a lot harder on myself than it had to be; so I scaled back and kept my pace… which helped make successful.
What did I learn. Well, I learned there is a lot I can do that I assumed I would never have. If you had suggested a year ago that I could run, let alone finish a 5k, I would have been severely skeptical. But yet, here I am, having finished my first race and looking forward to others. Maybe, if I’m lucky, the next one will be in a faster pace, but if not, so what… at least I did it. And even that is an improvement.