I woke up around 6:30, excitedly hopped out of bed, and jogged upstairs into the living room where my dad was sitting. With a huge smile I exclaimed, “Gooooood morning! I’m ready!”
My parents drove me to the race and hung out with me until the gun went off. My dad found a map of the course, and we noticed the there was a huge hill to go up and down during the last mile. Whatever, I figured, at least it’s toward the end, and maybe I’ll be in my zone by then. Nothin’ I can do about it now! It’s time to run!
My mom captured this gem while I was running by her at the beginning of the race.
I could feel that I was running a little faster than usual (which you readers so ingeniously told me would happen), but my adrenaline was flowing and I was just pumped to be out there with all the people! But wait a sec … why are we already going uphill? Maybe once we turn the corner we’ll be running flat again. And then I turned the corner only to see another hill up ahead! REAAALLLLYYYY?!
I was still rockin’ it, though. These hills weren’t too big. I was just hitting my groove when I heard someone shout my name behind me. It was my best friend’s sister Gretchen! Yay! It’s always nice to see a friendly face! And then she wasn’t behind me anymore. Haha. She’s a real runner.
So I got up the hill and turned a corner only to find what? You guessed it. Another hill! By now you get the gist of this course. I’m gonna say it was 80% uphill! Maybe it’s an exaggeration, but if not 80% then 70%.
My only goal was to run the entire race without walking. I did not accomplish this goal. Come on! Way too many hills that just kept getting longer and tougher. I figured I could walk faster uphill than I was running anyway, so I was cool with walking uphill at times.
The final hill was a doosie. It was a mountain, actually. I was trying to keep a solid pace, but my calves were burning something fierce. I couldn’t imagine what my entire bod would have felt like if I ran up the entire thing! I kept pushin and pushin, and finally I conquered the hillmountain. And then, like a godsend, we finally got to go downhill!!!! Cue heavenly music!
I was unstoppable down this hill! It felt so amazing to finally just GO. All this uphill business held me back, but I was zooming down this hill. I got a sideache toward the bottom, but not nearly as bad as that first one I got a couple of weeks ago. I focused on my breathing, dug my fingers into my side and ran through the slight pain. There was no way I was stopping now! Push, Amanda!
I spotted the third mile marker a ways up and was like OH MY GOD! I’M ALMOST FINISHED!! The time flew by. I never even really got a chance to get into my music, which is so unlike me. I kept digging into my sideache until I got to the last turn. I SEE THE FINISH LINE!!!! I took off like a jet and gave everything I had until I crossed the finish. That last little part was downhill, and I want to send flowers and candy to whomever came up with that brilliant idea. I felt like a champion cruising like that at the end!
My fastest 5K time yet!!! Even with the hills and walking, I still managed to rock :) I am soooo proud of myself! I went up right up to my mom and said (while panting), “That was SO HARD! The whole fricken thing was uphill!” Oops! I know it’s not really a swear word, but still not something I should be saying to my precious mommy. I guess feeling like a rockstar got the best of me!
Feeling good afterward
I headed over to the swag tent to pick up some goodies.
I walked away with a bag of Paula Red apples, a bottle of strawberry apple cider, a banana, a cookie and the feeling of great accomplishment.
We stopped for this photo op on the way to my parents’ car. Even after running a 5K, I still look like a model! Only kidding ;)
So there it is, folks! I did it. I feel great for having done it. And I will never run that course again! I will, however, do more races. What a rush! Thanks for all the encouragement!!!!!!!!!