Guess what?! I FINALLY got back to the gym yesterday AND I’m heading out for a run today. Woohoo! Back in action!
In the midst of all my bad luck in May, I was fortunately still able to run the UAE Healthy Kidney 10k I had on the calendar. Not gonna lie – I was incredibly nervous to run this race. I hadn’t been training because of my ankle incident, so I was nervous about my endurance level. I was also still limping around a tad, so I wasn’t sure if my ankle would even hold up under the pressures of running. I thought about skipping the race, but the thought of a DNF and missing my 9+1 goal was terrifying. I was going to do that race – even if I had to limp my way through it.
I woke up the morning of and headed out the door with my oats-to-go. I planned to get there a bit early so I could pick up my bib, but my subway was running late (FYI – the train I take daily has been rated the worst subway line in NYC 4 years running – go C train!). Luckily, my friend Lindsey was running the race with me, so she was able to snag my number for me before they closed up shop.
Since I wasn’t sure how my ankle would do, I headed to a slower corral than usual. I didn’t want to feel pressured to go too fast if it was hurting, so I figured I’d stick closer to the back until I knew for sure. I was also anticipating needing a few walk breaks (I’m lookin’ at you Harlem Hill), so I didn’t want to annoy the Speedy Gonzales’.
Before I knew it, we were crossing the starting line and beginning the counter clockwise loop of Central Park’s outer loop. I felt a little twinge in my ankle at first, but after about a half a mile I was feeling good! No pain at all! Woot woot!
Once I realized my ankle was doing just fine, I picked up the pace a bit. I was feeling so good, I even high-fived a kidney! I bet not many people can say they’ve high-fived a kidney. #checkitoffthebucketlist
The first 3 miles went by without a hitch. But then mile four – I swear mile four was five miles long. I think it was a combination of the fact that I hadn’t been able to train (adios endurance) and that it was a very warm day out. The sun was beating down and it was much warmer than I’m used to running in. I stopped at every water station to hydrate up and ran through some of the sprinklers the race had set up to stay cool. Finally mile four was over, but mile five felt just as long (which, technically it is buttttt you get the point). At last I only had a little over a mile to go. I was trekking along and thought about walking, but I wanted to race to be over as soon as possible – so I kept running.
Toward the end, there were signs telling us we had 1000 meters to go. That seemed like forever to me. It also felt like forever until I saw the 800 meters to go sign. I tell you – that last 1000 meters was brutal. It was also uphill. Finishing a course on an uphill is just… yuck.
I pushed through though and crossed that finish line, tired but so happy the race was over.
It was by no means a PR, but I’m proud of myself for getting out there despite feeling nervous and undertrained. I’m extremely happy my ankle held up and seems to be healed, but man, that was definitely the hardest race I’ve ever done – never thought I’d say that about a 10k.
I met back up with Lindsey after the race. The first thing we said to each other? That was hard! She’d had a tough time, too – but you know what? It just makes the medals that much sweeter!
What’s the toughest race you’ve ever finished?
Ever high-fived a kidney?