I finished! Soaked, and limping. The weather in NY today is miserable. Steady rain is falling. What a way to get introduced to organized racing. It took a lot to talk myself into actually going today. Even with the terrible weather I was amazed at how many people still showed up for the race.
I walked over and looked around the registration area hoping they were handing out rain ponchos. No luck. Made my way to the designated starting corral and stretched a bit. Being surrounded by all the people in the corral the rain didn’t feel that bad. I was still questioning what the heck I was doing there. I did see some people leave before the race started. Smart. I should have followed but I talked myself out of it. I wanted to feel what a race felt like. The crowd started slowly creeping forward toward the start and before I knew it I was crossing the start line. Here we go I thought. I noticed right off the bat that I was running a faster pace than I have ever run. The pack and my adrenaline was pulling me along. I slowed a little but knew I was still running a faster pace than normal. But I felt good so I sustained it. My lungs felt good. I ran the first hill that usually gives me problems and it was no problem. Mile one down. Feeling good. If I can keep this pace I will be very happy. I settled in and took in my surroundings. Hearing conversations and the pounding of peoples sneakers on the pavement, watching people weaving in and out, actually passing some people. I was having fun, feeling a part of something. Even if it was a little crazy to be there in the weather. Which at this point I wasn’t really noticing. I have run the course before so I knew what to expect. Where I struggle and where I can cruise. So far coming up on mile two I wasn’t struggling at all. Still cruising along, thinking about the finish line. Mile two finished. Feeling good. Mile 2.3…I pull up lame. My right calf muscle seized up. Damn! I was feeling so good! I tried to stretch it out to no avail. I kept walking/limping hoping it would loosen up. I stopped again to stretch. No use. I kept on walking/limping. Defeated and deflated. Everyone was passing me now. I tried to run but it hurt so I stopped. I don’t want to do any more damage, it’s my first race and I want to do more. Damn. This sucks. I walked the course downtown and was planning on veering off to the right at 77th st and walking home. At this point I am in the back with all the overweight women who were walking and even a good number of them were passing me. The rain was penetrating my clothes and I was drenched. I was cursing the weather, myself, running, everything. Not having fun anymore. Being back there and watching the determination of those ladies in the back was pretty cool. They inspired me to stay and finish the course. I got to 77th and limp/ran to the finish just past 72nd st. I crossed the finish line soaked and limping. My first race completed! My calf is killing me and it hurts to walk. Of course my lungs feel good so my muscles decide to fuck with me. Don’t think I’ll be running for a while. Think I’ll hit the gym and strengthen up for the next few weeks.
I’m proud that I finished.
Thanks for reading.