What an experience. If it had been named 5k HIKE - I might have been a little more prepared. Nevertheless, we ran, we hiked and we finished. (WE=My friend Jenni and I)Here I am ready to go. Jenni had picked up our packets the night before. I thought I would be festive and wear the free shirt they gave us. Let me give you some background. I started running on July 4th. There is another friend, Angela, who is running a half marathon in October and was starting a group training. I thought - I don't like to run, I have never ran further than a mile, I'm not interested. They were starting out easy - run 1 min. walk 2 mins, repeat 10x's. I thought - I could do that - it would be good to get exercise.
Well - it was so fun running with friends, I started a training schedule to help build my endurance to run 30 minutes without stopping. We were doing great and on July 18th we ran 4 miles, doing 4:1 intervals. It felt awesome and I couldn't believe in 2 weeks I could run 4 miles without passing out. Wahoo.
However the next week I should have rested a little more. My right ankle area started hurting. I was still running and then I would try to take it easy. After another 2 weeks - I was given a brochure on common running injuries. I read though everything and finally found the description of my pain - I had done something to my Achilles Tendon. Solution: STOP RUNNING. I was really enjoying running and didn't want to stop. But I did. I didn't run for a week, got new running shoes for when I was ready to run again and then tried. I could walk after the first time I ran again. So - I continued to ice it. My running has been slow go again, we rest days in between to be able to walk on my foot.
We still had a goal though. We wanted to run TODAY. We registered, I was feeling great - so we started. The weather was perfect - I was excited to pace ourselves and push just a little to make good time. That was all before we knew our path.
We started out running a lap on the field. It had rained the night before and the ground was very soggy - so we were basically running in mud in some parts. Then off to the woods - because well, we live in Georgia, and there are few areas without "woods". We head done a nice hill - a trail though - I am a little leary. Running on wet pine straw, pine cones and tree roots? This isn't what I signed up for. We got down the hill and it flattened out - yeah - 1 mile already! We kept going and it opens up to a clearing - we run around the clearing (hard to run in wet, semi-long grass) So, we take a break and walk for 1 min. We start again and WATER - that felt refreshing. We keep running and - yeah - 2nd mile complete. We continue running, but this time, feeling a little tired as it's the longest I've ran with only 1 minute break walking. Then starts the up-hill climb. Naturally we knew this needed to happen sometime - but the trail narrowed and really - I would be interested to see someone run up this trail. It had a good incline.
We are hiking now - I'm about to turn the zig-zag and hear, "Molly! Wait! I'm going to throw up!" Ahh - I look behind and Jenni wasn't doing so good. I stop - she recovers and we continue on our way. It flattened out a bit so we started running, but then it got steep again. We hiked again. Then we could see the field and hear the crowd. We started running with one more lap around the grass - however, we were exhausted. We stopped and walked until the last half and ended in glory!
Here I am coming in at the finish line - Jenni sprinted a little earlier than I. Thanks to whoever yelled "Go #6"
Shawn on the side lines snapped my finish race - 43:12 I was happy, we were aiming for 38 minutes, but didn't expect the hike - so we did a great job and we had fun!
Coming off the finish line - I NEED WATER!!!
I have had such wonderful support and love for Shawn and the girls. Thanks so much!
They really came for the free food at the end. Of course - I shared my grapes with them - they were tasty after 3.1 miles.
I can't wait to run my next 5k - no more trail runs - get me on some pavement so I can actually use my training! :)