Early in the year, my friend Dan and I decided we’d set a goal to run a 10K together and we recently decided to do the Midnight Madness 10K as our first one. Matty J and Braxton joined us. Dan regularly trains at that distance, I’d only run a 10K distance twice in training. The race was Saturday night at 8:30 pm (yes pm, it is the Midnight Madness run, afterall!) in Ames, IA. It was 2 laps around the course that the 5K runners used. I faced several interesting challenges (some will have to go into more detail in future posts)
My Goal: To finish without walking (or having any sort of embarrassing bathroom situation…but that is always my goal in races) in under an hour and 13 minutes.
Challenges: I had an employee who called in sick that morning so had to work a pretty full day before the race. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE being a therapist and seeing clients, but I’d counted on having the afternoon off to rest, hydrate, and make smart food choices, especially with the high humidity. I hadn’t done a full massage shift in a few weeks and my back and legs were tired going into the race. Now, as soon as I started to grump about my sore legs, I stopped and said to myself “Um, in a month and a half I’ll have to do this distance after swimming a mile and biking 25 miles. Quit your bitching!” I decided to take advantage of the fatigue.
The humidity was pretty bad and we had to get to the race site well before the run because packet pick-up closed so there was more time standing around in the humidity. I was out-of-sorts as well and really doubting my ability to actually finish based on how my mind and body were feeling.
I am so thankful that runners could use iPods. That was my salvation. As soon as the gun went, people took off. I started with a slow song and reminded myself of my goal to just finish and not walk. It was disheartening at first to see people passing me by, but after about a mile some of those people had slowed up and after 2 miles, many were walking while I was still plodding along at my even pace. It was at about 2.75 mile mark when I started to feel a bad feeling in my gut, a cold sweat, a bit of faintness and I knew I was having a panic attack. I was seriously considering quitting at the 5K turnaround point (really the only reasonable stopping point) but then I saw Matty J in passing and decided to keep going since I didn’t want to have to admit to my friends and Matt I’d quit.
I upped my music tempo and barreled through, reminding myself that I was having a chemical response and nothing was really wrong with my body. Eventually the feeling passed, at least for about 2 miles. It happened once more and I did the same thing. At that point, I didn’t have a stopping option so I just had to keep going. As soon as I passed the last water stop (and for some stupid reason poured water into my shoe?) I got excited and realized I actually would finish. I upped my pace and as soon as I saw the finish line, I was ecstatic. I finished in an hour and 10 minutes (exactly) and at 11:14 pace which for me is really, really good.
I was glad the race was over, but it has made me so much more anxious for the HyVee Triathlon and questioning whether I can really do it all. I am still having doubts, but will train as though I CAN do it all…