I think I told you guys that I was planning on doing a 5K last weekend with my friend Lauren from Forward Is A Pace.
Well, Lauren was stricken with an evil kidney stone last week and was unable to travel into town for the race. Which we were both super sad about, so I went to the race by myself prepared to kick the shit out of this 5K. And I wrote her name on my arm, so she could still be there to encourage me. The race was in downtown Detroit, in the pretty parts, and not in the drive by shooting area. Which, are actually not that far apart. So I got there early in all my fancy new running clothes that I recently bought. I figured it was time to look the part. I also know that I will find any excuse not to run, so now I have fancy pants clothes so that way “wrong clothes” are no longer an excuse. I checked in, did some stretching, and totally made it look like I knew what I was doing. I’m sure everyone was fooled.
So we’re all lined up, and there are about a billion people (not really) and there are some announcements and I’m getting my Nike+ thingy ready and then all of a sudden we’re off! I immediately felt my calves tense up, which is weird for me, but I kept pushing through. I was all confident and crap and was actually passing people. I was enjoying running downtown, and seeing the city in a way that I never have before. Having a grand ol’ time. This is exactly when shit changed.
At one point in the race, the course forked off for the 5K and the 10K race. The announcement was about this, but it was confusing. Also…there were no signs. Just people standing up shouting and putting their hands in the air to show 5 fingers and 10 fingers in order to differentiate between the 5 and 10K course. Well…shockingly when you put 10 fingers in the air, it looks an awful lot like 5 fingers in the air. See where I’m going with this?
I ended up on the 10K course.
AND because it wasn’t marked well I didn’t realize this until I was already pretty FAR into the 10K course. I had noticed a few people walking back the way we came, but I had no idea why. They could have been quitters for all I knew. Losery quitters. Well…hindsight tells me they weren’t losery quitters but rather people who made the same mistake I did. At this point I realized that my 5K time would be all fucked up, so I just kinda decided to keep going. You know that scene in Forrest Gump where he’s like, “I already made it this far, so I thought I just keep on going”, or something like that? Well thats kinda what I did.
I have never ran more than 3 miles, and I did that once at the last 5K that I did. A 10K is just over 6 miles. Right around the time that I hit the 5K marker I was really pissed because I realized I would have already been done at that point but honestly its true what they say, you find a groove. My groove was slow as hell. but I kept moving and didn’t do a lot of walking. I tortoised the shit outta that race. Screw all those hares that were around me, after all I didn’t even plan on running a 10K. In fact when I started I made some kind of smug comment to myself about how much it would suck to do the 10K and how absolutely moronic those people are. Well..I guess I am accidental moron. Also I think it sounds better when I say I’m an almost quarter marathoner. Makes it sound further.
As I was doing the 10K course I was really watching the people around me. Fantastically different types of people, styles, body types. There was so much of “if they can do this, so can I”. Many people passed me, and I passed people. I felt strong and weak all at the same time. But the best/worst part of the race was the end. You see this race ended at home plate of Comerica Park. Which I was anticipating to be pretty awesome. So once I saw the stadium in sight, I knew I was close, just had a push a little further. So I got to the front and saw I had to turn the corner, and I was like MOTHER FUCKER when will it end! So I turned the corner, and I see the people in front of me turning the corner again, and I’m all CRUEL WORLD! At this point I have to do some extra walking because I’m pretty sure my knees were disintegrating right under me and my feet were literally falling off. So now I get ready to turn the second corner, and those assholes in front of me TURNED ANOTHER CORNER. I seriously was ready to be all “fuck this race, I’m done.” but those damn course monitor people are so cheerful that I kept running. So I get to the third corner, and I can see half way down the street is a ramp that goes down into the behind the scenes area of the stadium. And I’m like YES YES YES. So I run down the ramp, and proceed to run around the inside of the stadium. Those cruel mother fuckers, made me run around the WHOLE outside of the stadium and then halfway around the inside, then from the outfield to home plate. It was like one cruel joke after another. But I did it, damn it. I am an accidental 10Ker. And while I spent the time immediately after feeling like the dumb dumb who went the wrong way, I was also really proud of myself. It also helped that were a few other dumb dumbs too.
So I spend the night icing my knees, and watching 80’s movies. I felt really proud of myself. The best part was when I told people they all laughed at me, because I’m dumb, but then followed it up with how proud they were of me. I’ll gladly make an ass out of myself, as long as it can also make people proud of me. The other best part is that I did it. I didn’t give up, I didn’t walk the whole time, I kept going. And the bestest part of all is that I could do it. I always relate my physical accomplishments back to when I was really sick. Just 2 years ago, I couldn’t leave my house without shitting my pants, and being so fatigued it resulted in hours of napping. And now…I accidentally ran 6 miles. SUCK ON THAT COLITIS.