It has been such a long time since I’ve written this kind of post that I’ve pretty much forgotten how to start one. So I guess first I will show you this:
This is the Charm City forecast for Sunday. Not quite as warm as I’d like, but daytime looks pretty good if you compare it to yesterday when the high was back in the mid-20’s again! Thank goodness my race is in the afternoon and not in the evening when that snow moves in.
Yes you heard that correctly. Snow in mid-March which is a real bummer, but totally not the point. The point is…
On Sunday I HAVE A RACE.
I HAVE A RACE!!
It may not sound like much, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited and nervous for a 5K in my life. The last time I had a race was in January and we all know what happened after that. Except maybe you don’t know…basically I hurt myself in February and have been tethered to the exercise bike and yoga mat for the past month. Not the most terrible thing, but I think I can speak for a lot of people when I say that I would much rather be running than pedaling in place for an hour.
Since last Saturday I have logged 10 miles. This also may not sound like much, but I am so thankful for every single one of those miles; even the ones that hurt a little. Today I’m resting, tomorrow I’m biking, I’ll be icing, icing, icing, and Sunday at 1:15 pm I will be hopefully ready for the raucous, green-clad spectacle that is this:
The Kelly St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock is the biggest St. Paddy’s race you will find around here. It takes place right in the heart of the city and usually has around 5,000 participants. Not that I’m in any kind of PR shape, but I’d still like to grab a spot as close to the front as I can to take advantage of the downhill start. Plus the faster I finish, the better the spot I’ll get in the beer line.
As for the leg problem – which is really now more of a foot/ankle problem because the calf pain has mostly subsided – who knows. Should I have run 5 miles on it on Tuesday? Probably not, but I was just so excited to get out there again that I got a little too overzealous. It bothered me enough after that run that I made another doctor appointment – this time with a podiatrist – for Monday afternoon. I did crank out 2 miles on the treadmill yesterday without too much of an issue though, so I’m thinking for short distances I’m probably okay for now.
Either way I’m going to finish this race. I’m going to wear something silly and green and I’m going to have fun with it. Because in the end that’s all that matters anyway.
As luck (HAHA SEE WHAT I DID THERE!?) would have it, the theme of the Friday Five this week is: OFF TO THE RACES!
Because I have a race this weekend, you know. So I’m feeling very well equipped and qualified to talk about races.
1) The Shirt. As excited as I get over a race tee – any race tee – you’d think they were giving it to me for free. Since my first 10K last July my collection has been steadily growing and my race shirts are some of the only ones that actually hang up in my closet rather than get folded on a shelf. I’m not even particularly picky about what they look like. Even if I only wear the shirt around my house one time I will still cherish it forever.
In my turkey trot last year I was like the 601st person to sign up and the fabulously neon pink tech shirts were limited to only the first 600 people. Even though they had more than 600 participants the previous year, but I’m not complaining or still bitter about it at all. I swear.
2) The Competition. And not even necessarily against other people, but more so against myself. I never played team sports growing up and this was not because I’m not a competitive person. I’m actually ULTRAcompetitive. Which I think factored into my decision to not try out for any teams. I was afraid of failure and at the expense of my teammates. At least part of the reason why running is such a perfect sport for me is that it’s a very personal thing. Having my best or worst race is just that…it’s for me only and doesn’t reflect on anyone else.
3) A Goal to Work Toward. I am a very goal oriented person and the feeling of accomplishment I get from tackling a race that I’ve been training hard for is just about as good as the endorphin rush. Before I ran my first half last year, I worried about what would happen once I finished climbing the mountain. The answer? Find a new mountain to climb!
4) Bling. Obviously this is not a guarantee. However, as someone who grew up never receiving recognition for any sort of athletic activity, the possibility of a medal – even just for finishing – is very enticing to me.
5) Runners Are Just Awesome People. There are few situations that I feel so confident walking into completely alone and knowing that I will make at least one friend before I leave. I have shown up at every single one of my races solo, save for one time and I never felt awkward or lonely when I got there. For the most part, runners are such a friendly, welcoming bunch, and I’m pleased and proud to be a part of it.
What are some of your favorite things about racing? Will you be racing this weekend?
I hope everyone has fun whatever their plans, and I’ll hopefully be back with a very cheerful race recap (MY FIRST SINCE JANUARY!) on Monday! Now I’m off to Target to find some cheesy green accessories for Sunday.