|Post-race, I am wobbly but standing.|
Last Saturday, I completed my first race (the Mississippi Blues Half-Marathon) and again, it's not something I ever pictured myself doing. People who run and race for fun? 'Batshit crazy' was my previous opinion. In fact, it still is my opinion, I'm just proud to be one of the batshitters now. Makes me wonder...
Just how many more I-would-never-do-that things do I have in my future?
|Shirley's volunteer garb|
I am good at many things in this life but getting up early is not one of them. Yet, somehow, I was so pumped and excited that I awoke at 5 a.m. and jumped out of bed. Dressed and ready for breakfast in 3 minutes, I headed down to the hotel's breakfast room (which catered to race participants) expecting to be late. I was the only person there.
Down at the starting line, I was nervous and jabbering to anyone, "It's my first race!" It was early and cold - the exact opposite of a cozy warm bed. It all went down in front of the capitol building and I heard Jackson's mayor welcome everyone to the race. Then, somebody played the national anthem on electric guitar and we were off, with helicopters buzzing overhead. It was thrilling!
|A fellow runner at the Expo, night before.|
And I learned interesting things about my body in the process. Even though I got up early to eat breakfast to (ahem) move things along in the bathroom, there were several moments during the race that I became concerned. At one point, I thought, "Wow. I hope I don't crap my pants. That would be embarrassing." Then, I turn the corner, and a kid is holding a big sign that reads: "DON'T CRAP YOUR PANTS."
Then, about the 11th mile, the woman next to me whined, "All I can think about is the bathroom."
"Me too!" said I.
A man ran past us and said, "DON'T EVEN TALK ABOUT IT."
So, evidently, it is a common race problem faced by all runners, not just me. Whew!
|The medal - a gee-tar!|
Once I'd crossed the finish line, my speaking abilities disappeared. I was not overcome with emotion, just intense fatigue. It's like my tongue was too big for my head and I'd had quaaludes for lunch. My body had been working so hard on going forward without tipping over that all other functions were put on hold. Fascinating stuff.
|I'm in there somewhere.|
Next race: Surf City Half-Marathon in Huntington Beach on February 3rd. Ocean view and even better, it's flat.