In my short time running, I have entered and finished two 5k races. In both, I looked forward to with anticipation like a “spot on the Olympic team was at stake.” I ran hard from the start and in both races, I was pleased that the beginning of the race had a downward grade. This is obviously where my inexperience showed. I ran hard until that last quarter of the race and then it happened in both races……the part where you pay for that downward grade at the beginning. It’s called THE HILL!! The kind of hills that a Clydesdale, like myself, gets to the top of and has to wait for his lungs, because I left them somewhere on that hill. It’s the type of hill that makes me wonder why I ran in the first place. But, I completed the hills and crossed those finish lines. It is then that I realized why I run – it’s the pure sense of accomplishment. I find that I am continually learning each time I go out and run. And, what I have taken away from the two 5k’s that I have finished is as follows:
- The people that set up 5k races have a bit of evil in them. They tease you with the “downhills” and then place race photographers at the top of the hill (they snuck in at the end.) I know after the race is over and we have all left, all the volunteers are served pizza and then sit around and look at pictures of people like me running that hill. I’m sure they are laughing at my “I think I am missing a lung” facial expression.
- Every runner faces their own hill. It can be an actual hill at the end of a run that seems like Mt Everest or a curb in a parking lot that you have to run around because there is no way you can make your body jump four inches in the air to clear it. Every hill is different, even challenges like weather, injuries, or finding time to run are forms of hills we must overcome. But, we do it because we are runners. It carries over into the rest of our lives as well. Hills in our everyday life seem more manageable. It’s just another benefit of running.
I have 102 days, 21 hours, and 23 minutes until my marathon in Jacksonville, FL (26.2 with Donna – Finish Breast Cancer Marathon). My goal is 3:59:59 and I am working as hard as I can. If you want to follow my progress, check out www.Endomondo.com and search for Reist Mummau. I can use all the pep talks possible.
Side note: I ran my first 10k on 10/29/11 and loved it. Few things I observed: it’s longer and 10k organizers seem to be nicer. (No hills, course was flat as a pancake!!)
“In running, it doesn’t matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, ‘I have finished.’ There is a lot of satisfaction in that.” -Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder
Run Hard – Always Finish