Today was the San Diego Super Run 10K. Eric ran with Allison in the baby jogger, which went swimmingly!! The course was perfect and Allison did not move around at all while Eric ran.
It was a bit chilly this morning. We were running late AGAIN, (what is it with trying to get out of the house on time??), and did not have very much milk for the baby. There was a huge line to get into the Sea World parking lot; BECAUSE WE WERE LATE (rolls eyes). By the time we got parked, I fed the baby in the car again, Eric picked up his race number, and we found Track Club, it was close to 7:00 a.m.
For those of you just now tuning in, I was on bed rest the last 5 months of my pregnancy (from June 2005) and had a c-section in November.Â I was just cleared for running the end of December.Â Getting back to my same level of fitness has been challenging, at best. My mile splits are about 11-13 minutes, depending on many factors. Last year, I ran this race at a 9:52 minute per mile pace, which is not incredibly fast, but faster than what I expected to do today. My muscles do not respond to my commands to run the same way they used to. There is a lot of work yet to be done.
I missed the warm-up, but caught the stretching. I had the race day jitters and I had to go to the bathroom. I remembered the line to the bathrooms last year, almost missing the gun, and scurried up to the starting line, instead of dealing with that again this year.
THAT BABY!! She was wide awake, cooing at everyone, and looking all around. My baby is the cutest little girl in the whole world. I felt strong. I have not run farther than 5.25 miles since I had Allison. (I ran until the 20 mile run last year during marathon training. That is when I realized that some women run during their pregnancy. Some women even run marathons during their pregnancy, but I was too much of an amateur to pull that feat off.) I was not concerned that I would not be able to complete 6 miles (or 6.24), I was concerned about the glaring reality that I am just not strong enough to finish the way I finished last year.
The gun goes off and out we go.
We started across the Sea World parking lot, up to the first mile marker, and I was in my own special place in my head, IPod blasting. I do not even know what my first mile split was. I did not care. Mile 2, feeling good. We went over the first bridge, no problem. I went over the second bridge, feeling winded. When I got to the top of the second bridge, I started seeing people I knew that were coming back. Good, just the distraction I needed. Just before mile 3, I am thinking, “Where the hell is the turn around?” Finally, we get to the turn around, and I am heading back. Halfway there. I went back up the hill that leads out of the park and I had to walk for a minute. I was so out of breath. Then down the first bridge and I am dying up the second bridge. Mile 4, stupid hills. Water station. At this point, I am walking. My legs felt like lead. I was frustrated that I was walking, instead of running and jogging, but I could not muster the energy to run. Fortunately, when I did stop to walk, it was for less than a minute.
I started thinking about the guy giving out the splits. I did not want to hear 12 minute or more on my mile. I kicked it up a notch. Some of the people I had passed earlier had already passed me at the water station. I was not going to let them get away with that.
When I got to mile 5 and I heard 55:28, I thought, SHIT, I am going to finish in 70 minutes. This sucks. On my IPod, Nancy Sinatra starts singing, “These Boots.” What a silly, stupid song, but it motivates me every time. I crank it up. I have 1.24 miles left. Big deal.
I got up to the stoplight and there was Coach Paul, telling everyone he loves them and how awesome they are. I needed that motivation. I asked him if we were almost there, even though I knew I was. He told me, “Just a quarter mile left. Around the track once.” Then he told me to pick it up over the hill. I gave it all I had up the hill. I was thinking in my head, “straight-away, curve, straight-away, curve, and you are there.” As I approached the finish line, there were friends and people I recognized from the track club but may not have known very well, cheering me on. I sprinted the last 50 yards in. I made it.
Preliminary Guesstimate of time:
1 hour, 9 minutes, 33 seconds
Eric came in about 5 minutes after me. He was only one of two people that were pushing strollers. There were two strollers in the race, and both of the runners were men. It was really cute. Everyone was cheering for Eric. The announcer was saying, “Come on Dad!!” Eric finished strong, especially considering this was the farthest he has ever run. He finished in:
1 hour, 15 minutes, and some additional seconds.
What a great day and a great run. While I am significantly slower than what I was before, I feel good that I am out there doing it. I have to chase the self-doubt and insecurities away. I have to know that everyday I am growing stronger. I will do this. I have a lot of work to go, but I will finish this marathon. 26.2, I LOVE YOU. 🙂