Multiple choice: why did today totally rock?
A. I ran a Valentines-themed 5k with my awesome husband.
B. I ran in honor of a sister-runner who lost her life.
C. I didn’t get frostbite.
D. All of the above
The answer? D. All of the above.
Today was the Twin Cities in Motion Valentine’s Day TC 5k. It was the 1st race in the Twin Cities in Motion 2012 series. I was really looking forward to this race – between the Run Streak in November & December and the half-marathon training, I’ve been logging the miles.
Earlier in the week, I started seeing the weather forecast for Saturday get cold… and colder… and even colder. On Friday night, Jay and I started digging out the winter clothes – hats, scarves, mittens.
By Saturday morning, it was between 2 and 4 degrees. We bundled up and got ready for the race.
Not only because it was the 1st race of 2012, today was significant because it was the virtual Run for Sherry event. If you haven’t already, click over to Beth’s blog and read Sherry’s story. It’s an incredibly heartbreaking story…. and as soon as I read about it, I knew i had to participate.
Twin Cities in Motion passed out green “single” yellow “it’s complicated” and red” taken” bibs to race participants. I took the “taken” bib, obvi.
We got to Lake Harriet early enough to pick up a friend’s race bib, shirt and mug (she was sick and couldn’t make it), and then went back to the car to warm up. Thanks to my “nervous bladder”, I also had to use the porta-potties, twice.
There was probably at least a thousand, if not more, racers at the event. The event was run really well – tons of helpful volunteers, good set-up, and well-managed. I really enjoyed racing with the other runners. In fact, as the gun went off, I turned to Jay and said, “I forgot how much I liked racing!”
It was pretty cold, you guys. I mean…. I warmed up a little bit, but the run itself was rough. My lungs weren’t reacting well to the cold air. I couldn’t find a good pace or rhythm. My hips were SO tight and stiff. And, by 1/2 mile, my heart-rate was at my anerobic threshold (AT). I knew my body was working hard just to maintain what I thought was a “comfortable” pace.
Since most of my training runs were indoors, I knew my “comfortable” pace – the pace that kept my heart-rate more in fat-burning zone. I knew I could push it and run atleast 1:00/mile faster. Today’s race? I couldn’t push the pace. To run my “comfortable training pace” during a race felt like a let-down. I knew I could run faster and it felt like my body was fighting me the entire time.
But we finished. And in the true spirit of Valentine’s Day, Jay and I finished the race holding hands….
Please, a collective “awwwww.”
It was a fun race. Despite my disatisfaction about the pace. I thought of my running friends during the race. I thought of how far I’ve come in the past 2 years of running. And I thought of Sherry and running for someone who can’t.
I missed seeing Carissa at the race, but I definitely talked to some OTHER girl who I thought was her. Embarrassing, right? Ummm, right.
The race was hard. But totally worth it. I loved it – despite the struggles and challenges. In fact, having a hard run just makes those easy runs THAT much better, right? It’s helping build character and strength for the ultimate goal – the TC Marathon in October.
I loved running for Sherry today and making the earth move. What an important reminder to run, if you can. Move, if you can. And appreciate everything and everyone in your life.
Twin Cities in Motion has agreed to provide my race entry fees in return for documenting my experiences training, running and preparing for the marathon on both my twelve-in-twelve.com site and the Twin Cities in Motion site. They have made resources available to me, and in return, I will fully disclose any products or services provided. All of the opinions expressed on this site or the Twin Cities in Motion site are my own and I will speak honestly and truthfully about the experience training for, preparing and running my first marathon.