Sunday, March 4, 2012

You're gonna like how it feels.

There are races.

And there are RACES.

This morning, I got up for the last race in the Run Denver Series. The Run Denver Series consists of 5 5ks (or you can choose the half marathon for the last race).

We've dealt with wicked weather for this race series. We've had snow and ice and +35mph winds and sub freezing weather. 

And at each race, I've managed to pull a PR out of my butt. Sometimes completely unexpected.

But TODAY was different. A month ago, (after my last 5k), Coach Mike said "You've proven you know how to PR. Now, let's go for a new goal."

He throws out (of maybe it was more of throwing up) a goal.

I was like all DAMN FOOL where you get those numbers from.

Of course, I didn't say that to him. I'm not stupid. I didn't exactly want the next week to consist of holding plank for 5 minutes.

But, no way, nuh uh, I could hit that goal. So, I posted it to my computer monitor. Everyday, I looked at it. And everyday, I started thinking "Maybe coach isn't crazy. Maybe."

Then I started strategizing....thinking "OK, to hit that goal, I need to run the first mile at x, the second at x-10, the third at x-10+puke.

It could happen.

Race morning

I decided to leave a little earlier than normal. It was a different venue. I didn't know where I was going AND there's also a half marathon. I expected that meant there would be a whole lot more people.

When I arrived, the first lot I passed was full. the second lot was full. I get to the third lot (which was right next to start). I had nowhere else to go, so I turned into the lot.

Right in the front row, there is a parking spot....just sitting there....right in front of the start.

Today is going to be a good day.

I drink my SUPER FAST BEVERAGE. it's a secret recipe, so if I tell you, I' know.

I hop across the street. I pick up my race shirt and notice that it's white with GREEN. The green matches my socks.

Today is going to be a good day.

Then I head over to get my medal for completing 3 of the 5 races.  It is one of the coolest medals I've ever seen.

Today is going to be a good day.

I drop my stuff off at the car.  I realize that I need to find a porta potty pretty fast. That was a long drive to the race.  then, I see the lines. Lines that go all the way to Kansas.

Then I remembered the park across the street. They have bathrooms. they're probably packed. But, if nothing else, I can go behind a tree.

I jog over to the park. The bathrooms are completely empty. EMPTY.

Today is going to be a good day.

I jog back up to the start.

I meet one of the coolest women at the start. She is just like me and Sam. We spend the time laughing about completely stupid stuff. 

Today is going to be a good day.

This race was going to be interesting. Temperature was expected to rise quickly and the wind was expected to start dying down. We're running along a Dam, so it's flat but completely exposed. I look out over the Dam, and I can see a flag in the distance blowing around like crazy. 

I don't have time to think about the wind, and the race starts! BOOM CHUGGA, I'm off and running.

For the first time ever, I decided to actually USE MY GARMIN. I set my paces for each mile. 

Of course, I take off really fast and garmin SCREAMS


But, I feel so good! I think to myself.


Really? Will slowing down really help me that much in the end.

At that point, garmin got pissed off and yelled:


Fine, but for the record. I AM NOT HAPPY ABOUT THIS.

We hit the first mile marker, and I pick up my pace about 10 seconds per mile. As I hit the turnaround, I start thinking that this is starting to hurt.

I have to pick up the pace again at mile 2.

That's going to hurt. I can't handle the pain. 

No seriously. I CANNOT HANDLE THE PAIN. HOW can I go faster?

I start closing in on mile 2. 

That's when Enrique showed up to run with me. 

It's my time.
It's my life.
I can do what I like.

(but most importantly)

Give me more more more.
What y'all consider the best, I consider mediocore.

And who's going to argue with Enrique or Pitbull?

The wind is not bad but it is a headwind, and I'm supposed to be running faster.

And now, I'm right on pace. RIGHT ON PACE. I can't slow down.

I keep singing over and over. 


Did I mention this was an out and back course? That's all fine and dandy.

Except that it's wide open.

That means from 1.5 miles away, I can see the finish. 

from 1.5 miles away.

why does it look so far? 


I finally look at my garmin. I have .25 miles left. I start running. Just running as hard as I can. A quarter of a mile is far.

It's really far.

I keep staring at a street light off in the distance. 

I know that I'm right on the edge of hitting my goal. But I don't care anymore. I'm going as hard as I can.

I swear to you....if I have to hold this pace for ONE MORE SECOND.....

I cross the finish line. 

My hands are shaking. 

I have to walk. Clock time showed that I missed my goal by a few seconds. But I don't know my chip time.

I grab some water. I need to walk. My heart rate is coming down. All I want to do is sit. I start walking to the car. I wanted to run into the woman that I talked to at the beginning of the race, but I couldn't find her. 

I still don't know my official results.

I don't know if I hit my goal. 

I know I PR'd, and it was a big one (30 seconds or so)

I know that I had nothing left to give. There was some part of me that came up from the depths that just wasn't going to give up today. 

5ks are short and painful. If you race them, REALLY painful. 

More than ever, I think I LIKE HOW IT FEELS.