Saturday was THE DAY. It wasn’t easy, but I did it! I ran the Fort4Fitness Half Marathon for the second time! I’m pretty proud of me right now. And I’m a whole lot sore.
Although my Starbucks did not make good pre-run hydration, (translate: I felt really ill for the first two miles), and though I told Barry I have never had to make a pit stop in any of my training or races, therefore ensuring that I had to, and though I had to pull from deeper than I knew I had in me to cover that last two miles, I did it. (That aforesaid Starbucks and the two glasses of water beforehand didn’t help, I’m sure.)
The good news? My knee made it; it’s truly healed. The bad? Walking, climbing stairs, and moving in general doesn’t feel so great right now. They say to rest one day for every mile you run. Yeah, that’s not likely to happen, but I think I will take a few days off.
To my dear husband, Barry, who took Friday off work and insisted on using his reward points to book us a hotel right beside the event, huge thanks. He also took photos and worried incessantly (I later learned) when the race notification system did not alert him to my progress. For all he knew I’d dropped out somewhere before mile 5.
To Oakdale for putting out the Christmas decorations and for all of those who dressed up and cheered us on, thank you. That was so fun. Especially Santa!
To the multitude of volunteers who handed me water and Gatorade as I ran past, thank you.
To PNC for placing the personalized sign for me at mile 10, thank you. I needed it about then!
To those who supplied the beer shots at about mile 12, deep gratitude.
To those runners who shared a smile, a comment, a pat on the back, blessings on you.
To the man on the bike at mile 8 who asked if I was ok, I’m sorry all I could manage was a thumbs up, but thanks for asking.
To the woman who handed me water and looked at my bib and pronounced my name properly, making me cry, thank you.
To those of you who pretended not to notice when I caught sight of the Parkinson’s Awareness tee shirts, thought of my departed dad, and cried again, thank you for your tact.
To the volunteers who allowed us to safely navigate traffic while also cheering us on, thanks.
To the group who gave me wild applause for no reason I can see other than your generosity, I thank you. Your clackers, drums, and pom poms were highly appreciated.
To the guy playing guitar on the street corner, I took my earbuds out to listen. Blessings!
To the young woman who gave me my much-coveted medal at the end, you have no idea how much that meant to me. If I hadn’t been so tired, I would have hugged you.
To those who handed out after-race fuel, thanks. Chocolate milk and bananas never tasted so good.
To the man who was there at both the beginning and end, quieting the fears of his over-caffeinated wife, the most thanks of all. (I know I’ve thanked him twice but he deserves it!)
Overall it was an awesome experience and I can’t wait to do it again next year. Though I hope to be in better shape (did I mention my knee feels better?) for it. Let the countdown begin!
Here’s what not to plan two days after a race: an art exhibit that requires carrying your paintings up stairs. Back and forth…that’s my subtle way of saying oh yeah — I’m having my first humble art show at the café where I often write.
It kinda feels like I’m writing from home because when I look up I see my paintings. I’m ridiculously excited about it because it was on my bucket list.
I am truly a newbie painter, but I enjoy it. That’s all that’s called for, in my opinion. I heard Elizabeth Gilbert say something so true this morning on a podcast: we’re all creative. To her it’s more a matter of exploring what we are curious about and that, she believes, leads to creating.
I buy that. Create on!