On March 30, 2008, I got up at the most unpleasant hour of 6:30 am to run…outside…in the cold. The Fourth Annual Scope It Out 5k (rather unfortunate name for a colon cancer benefit race, I know) was my very first competitive race and was the embodiment of how far I had come fitness wise. Four years ago, I couldn’t walk up a flight of stairs without getting winded. So to dare to run a 5k was a huge deal for me. When I arrived at the course, I saw a huge inflatable colon that you could walk through and immediately started laughing. I am all about colon cancer prevention and awareness (had my sister not gotten a colonoscopy early, her cancer may not have been treatable), but a balloon colon was too much for me at that ungodly hour.
This being my first race, I was unsure how other, more experienced runners would treat the novice runners. But I had nothing to worry about as everyone was very nice and encouraging when they learned it was my first race. And it never hurts to see so many cute boys in running shorts. But it was f%#&^cking cold and I was still very tired, so honestly the last thing on my mind was flirting…it was making sure I didn’t pass out during the run and get trampled on by the other participants. I ran with the 10:00 minute mile pace group and started off slow. All along the course were volunteers providing water and giving encouragement. I must give these people a huge hand because their cheering and smiling faces really kept me going. I made it to the 2 mile mark without a problem, but started to get a little weary around 2.5 miles. But when I rounded the corner and could see the finish line in sight, a huge rush of adrenaline overcame me and I sailed my way to the finish. Even better, my friend James was on the sidelines near the finish line, shouting my name, giving me the last bit of encouragement I needed. And as hokey as it may sound, tears welled up in my eyes as I ran across the finish line. To actually finish this race was a huge accomplishment for me…and for the person I have become.
Note: pictures from http://www.runwashington.com/news/mar08scopeitoutrpt.html.