Sunday, March 20, 2011

Human Race Recap

My dear friend Melissa and I started a running clinic about 10 weeks ago and the goal race was the St Patrick's Day Human Race in St. Paul.  We survived our 10 weeks and I might be so bold as to say that we thrived in our 10 weeks.  For the last couple of weeks we were running about 34-35 minutes and hovering around the 3 mile mark.  We were ready for that first 5K!  Bear with me, this could get long! 

This morning was RACE DAY!  This race is a later start because they shut down Summit Ave so they wait for the local churches to let out so that traffic is not too heavily disrupted.  It was a well put together race, we were able to pick up our race packets on Saturday so we didn't have to worry about getting there real early to get our chip and bib.  So, Missy and I got to campus with about an hour to spare - we had wanted to make sure we had plenty of time since we didn't know what the parking situation would be - turns out it was pretty good!  We had some friends and family coming to cheer us on so we were able to meet up with them before the race start which was nice. 

Pre-race - do you like our knee highs with the shamrocks?

We also ran in to a friend from The Running Room so we made our way to the start line with her.  It's funny cause Missy and I have done a TON of 5K walks together but we have never been concerned about a start line, etc before so it was a new experience.  The race started and the crowds started moving - slowly, but they were moving.  We crossed the start line and we were off!  Our plan was to stay together and run our program just like we had been doing. 

Less than half way through a couple of men started coming back in the other direction - those guys averaged about 5:30 minute miles and finished in under 17 minutes!  That is amazing - I don't aspire to be that fast but I can appreciate the endurance and strength that requires and think it is pretty darn cool! 

We stayed loose and enjoyed the run despite the rain that had fallen earlier, it was a little bit chilly but nothing that about 10 minutes of running couldn't cure!  When we hit the half way mark we were both very excited and felt great!  We had a great pace going and gave each other a high five and kept trucking! 

About the 2.5 mile mark my legs were tired and I was feeling it.  I may have decided to jump to Week 2 of Ripped in 30 on Saturday and at that moment in the race was really regretting it!  All of a sudden we could see the 3 mile marker sign and we looked at each other and knew it was time to kick it up a notch.  We had a great time going and we wanted to smash it!  Our friends and family were there at the 3 mile mark and the minute I saw my husband and kids I just got a chill from the top of my head to my toes.  Even as I type this I can feel it all over again - it was so exciting and emotional! 

Almost there!!!!
We got to the intersection and the finish was about 100 or so yards away and we started sprinting.  We crossed the finish together just like we had planned and it felt so wonderful!  We had a great hug and then it was time to walk it off a little bit!  We met up with our supporters and just enjoyed the moment.  I have played competitive team sports most of my life and have honestly never felt as accomplished as I did today. 

The thing about this race is that it really wasn't even about the race.  At the end of this race whether it had taken me 30 minutes or 40 minutes was not important - it was about finishing.  It is about this journey that I am on - living a healthy and active lifestyle.  It's about finishing what you have started and being proud and happy about the effort that you put in.  It's about remembering that life is short and you need to live it to its fullest every day because we just don't know what's next. 

I can't thank Missy enough for being my partner in crime for this running journey - and believe me when I tell you that it's not over, we have only just begun!  Today was the first of many "races" and I look forward to all of them!  To my family and friends that came out to the race today - THANK YOU!  It was not a beautiful, sunny day but you came anyway - you knew how important today was to me and you stood around in the wet and cold to support me.  Each and everyone of you that was there today has played a part in this journey I am on and I am so lucky to have all of you in my life!

Tammy (RR friend), Missy, me and Betty (running instructor)

No comments: