You need to move up to the line.
That is the moral of this post. I know you're not supposed to give the moral until the end of a story, but I have big news that seemed to merit a bold-type-faced statement like that.
In 3 acts:
This weekend we dragged our butts back to PA (a-gain) for a family reunion so I had to do my long run in Harrisburg a-gain. Brian and I ran separate days, so I went back to the Susquehanna to run my 14. I am happy to report that I was not approached by any sketchy men (woot), but the run itself s-u-c-k sucked.
I won't belabor the run, but suffice it to say, it took forever, and it was 85 degrees when I finally finished. If the half-mary is like that, I'm toast (pun intended). By mile 10, I was nearly out of water on my fuel belt and would have whored myself for a garden hose. When I saw the kind lady in her garden, I was pleased the whoring would not be necessary, and she filled my bottles and let me spray my head with her hose.
That helped me get another couple of miles, when it was time to pick it up to HMP. Again, not my day. I eeked out a bit more than a mile at that pace, but it was so unbelievably hot--with no shade--that by the time I smelled the scent of frying funnel cake, there was no way I'd make it to 14 miles without serious nausea setting in.
It was a street fair, and once you add velvet paintings and a brass band to the mix of heat and fried dough, I was on the verge of passing out. I pushed myself as hard as I could go without actually passing out--moved myself up to the line of consciousness--and finished with a jog to mile 14.
Finis. Last long run before the race. It's ok. I'm satisfied, and if the conditions cooperate, I will be confident heading into the HM.
Monday morning--today--was the 5k. Again humid, but not so hot, which was the best I could hope for this weekend, I guess. It was a fairly local schmokal type affair, which always suits me fine. I knew beating 22 minutes would be very close, given the humidity, but I wanted to try to do what I set out to do.
Full throttle. Three sevens.
In a rinky dink race, where not only are there no timing mats at the start, there are no chips at all, I simply had no choice but to move forward, up to the start line. This is ballsy and cocky and all the male genital adjectives you can think of. I was standing next to the people who would be winning the race. And some 8 year olds. Funny how that happens. The winners and the children, side by side.
The race started with a "Go!" and as promised, I was a bat outta hell.
Mile 1: 7:00
Where's the water? Where's the water? Where's the fucking water?
Oh, look, six horses standing in the middle of the street, waiting to headline a parade, no doubt.
Weave the horses. Avoid getting kicked in the head. You really can't beat racing six inches from a horse's ass.
Mile 2: 7:09
Where's the fucking water?
Thank you for the dainty sip of water.
Sucking wind. Sucking wind.
I hate 5k. I hate 5k.
I'm such a fraud. Speed work, full throttle, bats outta my ass. This just fucking sucks.
And then I heard her in my head. Mary. Iron Matron comes to me. Whispers words of wisdom. My dear friend, who has been in my corner through so much.
SHUT UP BRAIN.
Go. Go. Go. Push. Push. Push. And this is my brain's thought before it settled down:
At least when you're sucking wind, you know you're breathing and alive. So run hard damnit.
Mile 3: 7:15
Round the corner. Finish line. Finish line.
and the .1 at a 6:35 pace (sprint much?)
I don't know where I placed. I think second or third in my age group, but we couldn't stick around because we had to drive 8 hours back to Mass. (the state; we're not Catholic).
Move up to the line. Run like madness. Suck wind. Know you're alive.
Moving up to the line is terrifying. Running like madness is terrifying. Moving forward into new territory is terrifying. But often fantastic.
I am thrilled and energized by a new development in this blog. Starting June 1, I will be blogging as a featured blogger for Competitor Running's online entity, thus moving the bulk of my blogging energies to that domain.
My style, topics, and energy will remain the same as it is here. Even the title will remain the same. I will be the irreverent and neglectful mother you have all come to expect, and I am sure I will continue to deliver all the running schadenfreude you are used to receiving from me. Injuries, failures, excessive sharing about bladder control issues, and my trademark righteous indignation all will continue. It's the same blog, only, you know, kinda like a job sorta.
I will maintain this URL for the archives and will pop over to blog here once a week or so, when I feel compelled to drop the f-bomb a half dozen times in a post or steal copyright-protected photos of celebrities. But really, my Competitor Running blog will be the same schtick you're used to getting here. In fact, now that it's sorta kinda like a job, it will probably be far superior to my lazy posting about things like the weight of my shoes.
I'll badger you with reminders to update your feeds in the next week, but I hope you'll be excited to make the move with me.
So, there you have it. In three acts: moving up to the line. Scary, but good.