|JD and I, feeling the nerves pre-race|
As most of you already know, Mr. Light and I ran our first competitive race yesterday! It's known as the Eudora Horsethief 5K, and is held in my little hometown in Kansas. As this race has been around since I can remember, it was an easy choice for our first!
I found myself feeling a sense of nostalgia as I wound my way through the course, pounding the pavement on the paths I walked often as a kid. Like a train, people stopped as we made our way across intersections, and I couldn't help but wonder, "Maybe I know the people in those cars?" And there's a good chance I did. But then I also had to wonder, "Would those people even recognize me?" And there's a good chance they wouldn't, in that passing moment.
I kept my pace, focusing on my music and my thoughts, trying my hardest to forget about the gradual inclines that laid before me. (There were many of them.) I notice when I'm running uphill, I have a tendency to think about how tough it is and that maybe I should stop. I always have to remind myself that as soon as the path evens out, it's better; I can breathe easier, I have more drive, I can continue. I'm always thankful for continuing.
|Me and my mom! Pre-race|
Near the end at the bottom of the last hill, my beautiful and wonderful mom stood waiting for me. When I got close enough, she put down her camera and started to run alongside me. It was easy to see that she was beaming with pride. Man, I love my parents. I did so many things wrong, but they seem to only remember the things I did right. As we approached the top, I knew it was time to push it to the limit. I said goodbye, and started to sprint down the hill. I quickly realized I was pushing myself way past my limits, so I dialed back my pace for a few meters, but as soon as I turned the corner and faced the finish line, I sprinted again. I was determined to get in under 32:00.
|Most awesome face EVER|
31:51 was my official time, placing 5th in my age group (out of 8, let's not get ahead of ourselves here). Not bad! Not great, but considering I have only been a runner for a few months and have never been known for my speed, I feel great about it!
Overall, we had a great time, and are pumped for our next 5K on August 11: Small Town, Big Cause!
Have you ever run in a competitive race before? Would you consider it? Leave your experience/thoughts in the comments!
*All of the pictures you see here today were supplied by Ross from www.seekcrun.com! He's a retired professor who enjoys running, but can't anymore because of an injury, so he goes around to different races in the area and takes pictures, which he then supplies to the contestants for free! What a great service, right? Thanks Ross!