Sunday, April 22, 2007

Five Miles of Excuses

Today was the Doyle's Emerald Necklace run, a 5 mile race through Franklin Park that ends at Doyle's, a landmark bar in Jamacia Plain. The run itself was a beautiful run alongside the golf course, playing fields, zoo and stadium. The sun was out, the weather was warm - in stark contrast to last Sunday's cold Nor'easter.

I started out with my sister and my niece - all excited because I figured out how to make the two interval timers work on my spiffalicious watch. Woo Hoo! I dutifully set it for 4 minutes running/1 minute walking and headed off from the start line with my sister and niece.

I did tell them to run on ahead of me because I knew I was feeling slow.1 Since it's spring and allergy season,2 and I've been feeling a little gunky lately, 3 I wasn't expecting much today.4 Not to mention the inhaler in my hand 5 just in case I needed it.

At the first mile marker, they called out a 13:49 split - but since it took a full minute to cross the start line6 and this wasn't a chip timed race, I knew my time would actually be better than posted. At the turn around they had run out of water, and I was starting to parch7 (not to mention that I really needed a blue can of death because I had to pee 8 since the race started). The third water station had run out of cups and I had to have them pour water in my hand 9 so I was dying out there.

It's amazing I was even capable of doing this after a stressful couple of weeks of little to no sleep.10 So is it any wonder I ran 5 miles in 1:07 instead of the 1:00 I wanted and the 1:05 I estimated?

Here's the truth: it was a beautiful run. Yes there were glitches at the water stations, but truth be told, I hadn't run since the Cohasset 10k 3 weeks ago (until the other day). I managed to get 7 miles in, but they were a tough 7 miles of basically restarting. Yes, at this stage of the game I should be able to do better, but I dropped the ball and it shows. The good news in all this, I did go out and I did manage to finish the race in spite of my short comings. As a result, I now can sit down and figure out what's what in terms of getting ready for the Harpoon 5 miler in June and any races in between. Perhaps that's why I'm being drawn to this, in other sports you can "get lucky" or phone it in, but when the only thing that counts is how you move your body from point A to point B, there's no such thing as luck. There is only Zool the reflection of the work you put into it. Today I saw myself clearly and it wasn't exactly the picture I wanted to see, but it was the one I needed to see.

Now there is no other direction but forward, full speed ahead.


GB said...

You know why you're awesome? Because you know how the problems came about and you know how to fix them! You're right. In our sport the only thing that can be considered lucky is when we get perfect race weather, other than that, it's all in the training. Stay motivated! You'll thank yourself for it later.

JOJIT said...

No matter how many excuses you come up with, I believe that you are an inspiration to me and to others because you still can run a race no matter what!