Guess who got her fat ass out for a run on New Year’s Day?
I’ve been meaning to run a 5K on New Year’s for the last three years, but only got my act together this year. Perhaps it was the result of a little HBBC motivation since I’m totally counting this as a Resolution Run to score three extra points. It also didn’t hurt that we were experiencing a mini-heat wave (which unfortunately is now over) with temps topping out in the 40s. Nice!
My sister Z and her other half, Jolly Green, came along to cheer me on. The race took place in a small NH town I’d never been to before. There were almost 200 runners and walkers participating. After registering and taking a short warm-up jog around the block, we were all herded towards the start line.
Since I knew I was going to be super slow, I tried to stay towards the back of the pack but in front of the walkers. As I was waiting, Z ran up to me for a last minute hug and then said “Looks like it’s going to be uphill.”
Yeah. That was an understatement.
The start was right at the bottom of a very steep hill. That’s when I started having flashbacks to my first half marathon, which also took place in NH, and how hilly that thing was. I was in for it.
So the race started and I managed to drag my ass up that hill in some semblance of a run. Woo! After that it was hill after hill after hill. Mostly rolling hills but there were also three whopping huge uphills to deal with.
The race took place on country back roads which were not closed off to traffic. Thankfully there wasn’t much of that to contend with anyway so it was cool.
About a mile in a woman jogged up beside me and just started talking. Her presence and conversation helped take my mind off the hills that just kept coming. At one point there was a group of four of us running together, all chatting away about this and that. This was a new experience for me. It’s not that the English aren’t nice people, but, on the whole, they’re reserved so it’s not often that people chat with strangers mid run or are so openly friendly.
The first lady, N, and I stayed together for the rest of the race. Near the end, we rounded a curve and I saw a massive hill in front of us. I couldn’t contain the “Oh shit” that came out of my mouth at the sight of it. N immediately said, “Don’t look at it! Keep your eyes on the ground and keep going.” And that’s what I did.
I crawled my way up that behemoth of a hill and then up the remaining gentle incline towards the finish chute.
I scored a MASSIVE personal worst in this race. How slow was I? Let’s put it this way, I ran a faster pace during both of my marathons than I did in this 5K. Yeah, that slow. The hills were a factor but my performance can mostly be put down to general lack of fitness which has declined significantly in the last seven or so months. My race result didn’t and still has not diminished my joy though. I’m just so happy I got back out there again.
After finishing I thanked N for staying with me during the race and then we went back into the town hall to partake in the post-race spread. There were orange wedges, bagels, soups and cookies of almost every variety and all were homemade. Tasty doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Anyhoo, I think I’ve prattled on long enough. I’ll talk about my on-going battle with PF, goals and various other stuff later this week. Hope you have all enjoyed the first few days of the new year. Catch up with you when I can.