I ran my first race of 2017 today.
Alright, I jogged it. And walked it. I jog/walked it.
It’s called wogging.
I wogged my first race of 2017 today!
This is a 2017 intention I plan to keep: to run (wog!) one 5k each month this year. The idea is that I should see improvement over the 12 months, leading to greater self esteem and (perhaps) a slimmer waist.
The slimmer waist will be TBD, but I’m sure I’ll improve my time! Let me explain.
There were two good options for a fun run at the end of January: one run was to help people pay their electric bills, the other’s purpose was to get a free beer afterward…Dang that guilty conscience!
So. (much to my beer-drinking-husband’s disappointment) on January 1st I enthusiastically signed up for The Race for Warmth! I’ve got a whole month to train! I can do this! I used to run all the time! I’m sure my muscles remember how to do this!
I spent many a minute fondly remembering the energy of a race. The anticipation at the starting line, the mental endurance games when the race seems long, the final-flying kick at the end. Visualizations aside, the actual running, you know, to prepare for the race…yeah that didn’t happen so much.
Insert SNOWPACOLYPSE 2017. Now, there was some snow earlier this winter, but this time, it actually, truly snowed in Vancouver/Portland.
Do you know what the snow management plan for the Vancouver/Portland area is?
Wait for it to melt.
Not, PLOW or SALT or perhaps PLOW! Just…wait.
So, that plan works if the snow melts. But what happens when temperatures stay below freezing for a week?
The snow stays.
That’s what happens.
So, stay it did. 8 snow days later, had I accumulated any miles to go along with those inches of snow?
Heck no! I don’t own Yak Traks! Plus, drivers out here are crazy in inclement weather.
Also, I got the plague. Well, if the plague means hacking up a lung for 3 weeks (which I know it doesn’t, hyperbole!). Coughing and running don’t exactly work well together, so, run I did not.
But, time still passed. And every day I got closer and closer to race day. Until, fancy that, the day actually arrived.
“I CAN’T!” I wailed and moaned. “I’ve run a total of 2 miles in preparation for this race.” That’s right. The entirety of my preparations (stretched over a month!) were not even as long as the actual race.
“You can,” said Andy. “Take it slow. Walk if you have to. You’ll be happy that you did.”
I hate it when he’s right (actually, I love it. Cause my brain tells me I’m wrong about all sorts of things, and he’s a good litmus test for my kind of crazy).
Let’s review: the day of the race arrived and I
1. had not run 3 miles since, oh, I don’t know 2010?
2. had 2 year old running shoes (they don’t break down, right?),
3. was still wheezing and coughing my way through long conversations, and
4. realized the race was in the morning, when it was going to be 36 degrees outside.
Race for Warmth… blarg.
So, what I’m trying to say is I set myself up for absolutely nothing less than complete success.
If by success I meant utter failure, pneumonia and a pulled hamstring.
But, you know what happened? None of those things.
The energy at the start was the same, the exhilaration of starting something together, something difficult? It was infectious, and before I knew it, I was swept up in the crowd, jogging my first run in a long time.
Then I walked. Then I jogged. Then I walked. Then I jogged (wogging, remember?) So on and so forth until, suddenly, I finished!
All that worry, and all that whining, and here I was. Already done.
Now, my time was not stellar, but, as I said in the beginning, there is plenty of room for improvement. And it probably won’t snow again in Portland this winter… probably.
Time to sign up for my February race.
And get new shoes.
And get rid of this cough.
And, maybe run a mile or two… once I can feel my legs again.