Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Run!

The Armadillo Dash's Half-Marathon! In the beginning, I referred to this event as a race. Andrew eventually asked me who I was racing. That got me to thinking. I told him I wasn't racing anyone, I just wanted to finish. From that moment on, I referred to this event as a run. March 7, 2010 has loomed in my mind since before Christmas. It was there in the same way a due date is there...exciting, but with a bit of dread because you know its going to hurt. :)

God so blessed me through this process! While training for my run, I followed a schedule I found on the internet. It had you do one long run a week...I choose Sundays. Each long run went up a mile from week to week. On my 8 mile day, there was a 26 mile an hour wind. To put it nicely, that run stunk and I had to walk part of it. In theory, walking is not a bad thing, but personally, I was way disappointed. I prayed and prayed that God would calm the winds on Run Day...and He did. We had perfect weather...cool, overcast, and just a slight cool breeze!

I was at the back of the back. Like I told Andrew, I was not racing, I just wanted to finish and not be in anyone else's way! Once the air gun sounded signifying the start of my run, it took me a minute to actually cross the starting line. (or as seen in this picture...the finish line)!

My legs really only have one speed...slow. I took off at a comfortable pace, not really looking at my watch. My goal was to run somewhere in the 10 minute mile range...not any kind of land speed record, but I could live with it. This has taken some adjustment for me. I used to run in high school. Back in the day, I ran somewhere in the 6 minute mile range. I have had some issues of aging to overcome and accept I am not a spring chicken anymore.

Once past all that and I started doing longer runs, 10 minute miles sounded good. I got to the 1st mile marker and saw that I was at 10:44. Whoops, too slow. From that moment on, I picked up the pace. By starting slow, I was at the back with lots of people in front of me. Many of them started faster and lost speed as they went. I, by accident, did the opposite. I picked up speed and got to pass people the rest of the race. Instead of slowing down and getting passed, I was speeding up and doing the passing...which proved to be a huge confidence boost for me! Another key to the race was a good play list on my ipod!

Up to this day, the longest run I had done was 10 miles. When the 10 mile marker came and went, I was surprised at how good I felt. I had no aches or pains during the race, well a few here and there, but nothing substantial! I rounded the last corner and had less than a mile to go. Two boys passed me...that irritated me, so I sped up and continued to speed up until the finish line! The last mile was actually my fastest! Here I am at the finish. I ran the 13.1 miles in 2 hrs and 12 minutes...an average of 10:06 per mile!

I crossed to find my sweet little family waiting for me with my chocolate milk. A professor of kinesiology at Texas A&M said they had found drinking chocolate milk after physical activity has the same benefits of any sports drink...and no one can argue that Promised Land chocolate milk tastes much better than any ole Gatorade!

With it all said and done...it was an awesome experience, one that truly blessed me. God showed me that through Him, I can do anything...even run 13.1 miles!


Michelle said...

Wow! Congratulations Sam!! Such an awesome accomplishment!! You should be so proud of yourself!

Heather said...

My favorite race by far! Cograts Sam - and that was a great time!