Well, I did it. This weekend, I did something I never thought I would do, let alone do well. I ran a race.

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Posing at the starting line

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Thumbs up as I approach the finish line

 

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The final drive toward the finish line

I felt like I was in slow motion the whole race, but I didn’t walk once. I was proud of that as I crossed the finish line. I even yelled to Wendy as she was cheering me on for the final stretch, “I’m slower than hell but I haven’t walked once!” I guessed my time around 37 or 38 minutes, so I was shocked when I looked at my cell phone after crossing the finish line and seeing it said 9:33 a.m., a mere 33 minutes after the start time.

I figured the time of my phone was different than the official race time, but it wasn’t. The results were posted, and my official time was 32:51. This makes sense, because without my running buddy to push me, I average an 11 to 12 minute mile, and I would guess that the adrenaline of the race and the crowd pushed me to finish just under an 11- minute mile. With my running buddy, I go between 9 and 10 minutes. But I was still just blown away.

I couldn’t even run a quarter mile when I started running in June. It wasn’t until after the race, after the fanfare of the results, after I took my friend and cheerleader Michael home and met Wendy and her fiance, Scott, for lunch that I really processed what I’d done.

I couldn’t even take you out and drive the race course, because I don’t remember it. I know which streets I was on, but I don’t remember where we turned. At the turn-around point, I thought I was only halfway done and was ready to give up, scratch from next weekend’s race and give up on running,  but a man who I’d been keeping pace with told me we only had about a mile to go.  We introduced ourselves, and he told me he was 45 and had had two strokes and started running for health. I told him I’d lost more than 100 pounds and saw running as the final fitness frontier to really push me toward my goal. He couldn’t believe I used to weigh more than 300 pounds.

I ended up finishing a minute or two ahead of the man. Crossing the finish line was a moment I will never forget — it was a very intense emotional and physical rush.

That said, I learned a lot from this race: I need to log more miles during the week so I don’t struggle as much halfway through. I need to hit the elliptical more to strengthen my hips and thighs, and do a lot more core work, to ease the strain. I need to keep going forward and improving. But most of all, I learned that I can do it! I can run a race!

About the lack of updates: Last week, the week leading up to my race, should have been the perfect opportunity for blogging. I should have written about my nerves, my doubts, my fears, and  I didn’t. Mostly because I was busy between two jobs and preparing for the race itself, but also because I have had some serious doubts about blogging lately. Every time I hit “publish,” I think, do I really need to tell the Internet — and the trolls that may lurk therein — this? I’m not always sure I do.

Honestly, I am comfortable with coworkers, professional contacts, strangers, acquaintances and even frenemies/mortal enemies knowing that I have PCOS, that I try to live healthfully and am very passionate about fitness. I didn’t know anyone like me when I started my journey. I like connecting with others who’ve been there, and those who are struggling to get there, and this blog has provided a forum for that.

But to those of you who blog, I’m curious: Why do you do it?

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