Just when you don't think you have it in you... you surprise yourself.
That was me, not even 24 hours ago.. I crossed the finish line yelling "Yes! Yes!"
In that single moment, I have never felt more alive..
At that very moment, it all made sense..
The hard work, the hours, the pain, the miles, the sweat, the tears, the fighting with my worst enemy, myself.
At that moment, I ran "Self-Doubt" into the ground..
And I knew.. I could do anything.
I was .. unstoppable.
I just beat my previous Personal Record from a few weeks ago in February's Frostbite Footrace of 28:53.
Today, I came in at 26:19.
As runners, we are always trying to do top our previous records. And even though I didn't intentionally try to beat any records, I've been lacking sleep editing late at night and the night before, I just ran 6 miles... I really thought I didn't have it in me.
But when your surrounded by all these athletes all huddled (well freezing our butts off together) doing something we all love.. you can't help but feel inspired.
(we are strategically placed behind the speediest lady I've come across #1000, she likes to win all the races).
So although I went in thinking, I'm just gonna do my best and try to keep up..I changed my attitude into, "Hell, these races don't come often... I paid $35 not to run mediocre.. It's only a little over 3 miles.. It's not gonna kill me to do better than my best... "
The first mile... always KILLS me. I can't explain that love/hate relationship I have with Mile one. I don't think I've ever started a run thinking.. Oh yeah I love it! Nope. It's always, "what the heck am I doing.. this hurts.. oh gosh it's freezing.. oh my feet are killing me already... " So I dub the first mile to be my official "warm-up". It will never be a friendly mile that will put a smile on my face.. But catch me at mile 4-5 and I'm as happy as can be.
My focus was every where when we started.. checking out all the other runners wearing green, to what kind of shoes they have, to how tall everyone is.. But I learned with my previous races, I have to focus on one person that is slightly ahead of me. I literally zoom in.. I find this tall lanky guy who seems to run like he's gonna fall but he was pretty quick. I focus on him always trying to catch up to him and get closer to his pace. When I start to feel my rhythm, I run next to him for a quarter mile, take a deep breath, and pass him.
On to my next focus point. I found a gal with stripe socks and tried to keep up with her, but I knew she was booking at probably 9 min/miles.. And that sent me huffing & puffing. But I passed her. Then just when I thought we were almost there, I see a sign on the ground that says 1 Mile, one more mile, we take a turn and I see a lovely hill!
Leave it to Skinny Raven to set a hill before we cross the finish line. Hills are my worst enemy, my calves & quads will attest to that.. On this hill, I literally was gasping for air. I even looked around to make sure there were people standing along the race trail to help me just in case I collapsed. That is how hard I pushed myself. The hill was a tough one for me, but I imagined my grandfather who is in critical condition as of last night, who will probably not make it.. I imagine him laying in that hospital bed fighting for another day in his 95 years of life... And I think, this pain is temporary and I pushed harder than I ever have.. (Who knew I could do that?) And at that last turn, I sprinted my butt to the finish line.. Just in time to see that I scored a new PR :)