Thursday, December 6, 2012

A transformation

Historically, December has not been a good month for me.  While most people are going to parties, shopping, running jingle bell races, and enjoying the cold weather, i am usually working late, sitting in traffic, getting fat, not running, and isolating myself from the world.  It's still going to happen this year, but i at least made an effort to not sit in traffic, run, socialize with another human being, and be festive.

Last night i ran the Zion reindeer run 5k with Bobbi!  She lives up north, and i work up north, so she told be about this small weeknight race that would get me out of traffic, and be a small community race (no anxiety!  YAY!)  I don't know what it is about Bobbi, but she knew exactly what i needed.

I drove up and parked AT THE START LINE 15 minutes before the race.  I picked up my packet, which had a long sleeve tech, antlers, gloves, a hat, and few other things.  I went to the indoor bathroom that had no line, and then walked out to the start line.  I don't why this brings me so much joy, but it does.  I have actually only run one timed 5k in my life.  It was the 2011 Carrera de los Muertos, which i half walked/half ran with a friend.  My time was 36:11.  I was fairly certain that with Bobbi's guidance, i could beat that time.  

Bobbi and I before the race
Running the race, i was instantly reminded why i don't run 5k's.  Between the asthma and unwavering laziness, it really isn't a good fit for me.  Not that i am a great marathoner either, but it just comes much easier to me.  It was a chilly night, about 30 degrees, and of course i left my inhaler at home, so i wheezed along behind Bobbi the entire time.  Luckily, she is much wiser than I, and had a head lamp to  keep us safe (it was pretty dark, and there was some, albeit minimal, traffic) and a working garmin, so i just followed her.  And it worked.  I had no idea what my finishing time was, but based on the fact that i felt terrible, i just knew i beat that 36:11!

Fun fact: when looking through the photos from the night, Bobbi noticed that this guy in jeans beat me, and peed himself in the process of doing so.  I'm not judging, i'm impressed!  And, let he who has not peed themselves a little during a race cast the first stone.  (Spoiler: it won't be me.  Although i am normally running a marathon, and have never peed enough for it to be visible. for the record.)
Congratulations, you earned it.  I mean it.
Right after i finished, Santa gave me a candy cane, and we cheered for a few others finishing the race, and then went in to warm up.
They had snacks like pretzels, animal crackers, and bananas, and pizza was on the way!  We snagged some pizza, and they had a raffle while all the finishing times were being sorted out.  I won some fancy vitamins!
A whole evening of winning!
It turned out i ran the 5k in 26:18, which is a ten minute PR, and because my age group only contained 5 other girls, it landed me in 1st place for my age group!  THIS GIRL.  WON A MEDAL.  NOT FOR PARTICIPATION.  And Bobbi, who is the only reason i didn't just start walking half way through, won 2nd for her age group!
After the awards were given out
winners circle!
So, before the judgement starts to flow, i fully understand that 26:18 in not a competitive 5k time.  It was a really small race. Under 200 people.  I know most people can run significantly faster than that, so i want to personally thank all of you for not being there.  I really appreciate it.

Regardless of how small the field is, this marks a transition in my running.  I am no longer a "participant".  I am now a "competitor"  I totally understand why people work so hard to improve, because now i want another medal, and i want it bad.  Winning is awesome.  And, i have realized that 5k's aren't so terrible.  I mean, yeah, you consider vomiting the entire time, but it's over almost as soon as it begins.  So that's kind of fun.  

So, with that, the 2012 race season is over for me.  
I wore the medal all night.  And drank wine.
Maybe i should end my running career on this high note?

I'm just kidding.  I already am signed up for two marathons next year.  The crazy never stops, kids.

25 comments:

  1. I say that was a PERFECT way to round out the year! Thanks for trekking up and wheezing with me (gasping? rasping? hacking? whatevs...) for 3.1 miles. Medals RULE!

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  2. Your transformation sounds EXACTLY what I went through last December. I got my first age group award (2nd in my age group) and I have been hooked ever since! (I also wear my medals all day/night. My husband thinks I'm a mega weirdo.)

    I am also very jealous that you now own 2 pairs of reindeer antlers and I have 0! I think I need to change that this weekend.

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    1. well, if you ever need to borrow a pair, just let me know :D

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  3. wooHoo....Those are my kind of races! congrats..

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    1. Yes, i will definitely run this one again!

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  4. What a super fun race. I was 4th place female with a 29min in a super small 5K earlier this summer, which is good for me. You never know how a race is gonna turn out. Congrats on the race win!

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  5. Congrats on first place and the massive PR! With all the swag being given out, the race must have cost a fortune, I mean look how big the trophy is that that woman is holding. That guy in the jeans picture is an instant classic!

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    1. I mean it was a steep $25 for the race, but i think it more than made up for it :)

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    2. $25? That's cheaper than most. What a deal.

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  6. Woohoo!! I rec'd my only age group award at a mini-triathlon (there were 9 girls in my group...and I won 2nd). Nice job!! I'm not a super speedy person, your 5k time kicks my 5k's ass! Nice job!

    LOVE THE GUY peeing himself running in jeans! How do you get these photos and stuff for your blog??

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    1. I suppose i forgot to mention - they have someone taking pictures on the race, and they put them all up on facebook within two hours! Suck it, marathonfoto!

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    2. Lol... I actually meant how are u always a part of crazy shenanigans! Haha!

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  8. What a perfect Tuesday night! Unfortunately my month is teetering towards your typically December. Good thing I have a run with friends to look forward to soon to keep me motivated!

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  9. Congrats! Don't ever diminish being a badass in a small race. You showed up, the faster girls were eating Doritos on their couches haha

    That's some impressive swag for a small race. And lol at the jeans guy.

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  10. Congrats on stomping your PR!! What 2 marathons are you signed up for next year? I am doing Chicago next year and maybe a spring one yet.

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  11. Yay! Super cool and I loved the reindeer antlers. :o)

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  12. Look at you!! Congrats! That's way exciting! and festive!

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  13. A tech shirt, hat AND gloves???? NIIIICE. Congratulations on the AG win!!!! I won my AG last summer with a similar time at a similarly small race, but you know what, just like Cubs fans say, A WIN IS A WIN! And yes, it is addicting. Which is why I enjoy small races so much. Secret's out!!

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  14. great job hon! So jealous everyone gets to run with my sister MORE than I do, LOL!

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  15. Congratulations Sara!!!!! What an awesome way to end 2012- on a really high note! The picture cracked me up, the first thing that I noticed, besides the jeans, was that he peed himself. LOL.

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  16. Yay yay yay! So happy for you and Bobbi! This race sounds so fab. Congrats on the new PR and on placing 1st! And yes! Go for more medals! But I am not telling you the small races I try to medal in since we are in the same AG, lol ;)

    I have peed myself at the end of a 5K. But! I got 1st in my AG at that one too. So it's all good... right?

    Wish I could have done this with you guys! :)

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