Monday, October 17, 2011

"Going the Distance for Gabby" 5K

Yesterday I did something that I have kind of had in the back of my mind for a long time ... I ran a 5K!

(Full disclosure:  I mostly ran.  There were some big hills on this off-road course that kicked my butt so there was a little walking involved ... I really wish I could have run the whole time.  I think if it had been a flat course I could have, but who knows.  The important thing to me is that I trained, I ran as well as I could, and I crossed the finish line.)

This 39 year old posted an official time of .... wait for it .... 39:39.  That kinda cracked me up.

People keep asking me:  Are you going to keep running now?  Well, the whole running thing has been quite the experience.  Early on I said to my running buddy Kelly ... At what point will we actually run without thinking - when can I stop already???  Well, I feel like I did get to the point where I was running without thinking about the fact that my knees/calves/ankles/feet/heart/lungs/etc. were screaming in pain, and I was just running - kind of machine-like.  I was really happy that I got to that point, because it made distance running seem like less of an impossible dream.  I have no dreams of running marathons or even 10K races, but I think I would like to try another 5K sometime.  I would really like to run the whole thing, no walking.  We'll see what happens though.  Life often gets in the way of my best intentions with this kind of thing.

This race was different for me anyway.  When I first decided I would run this 5K, it was for my neighbor Gabby.  At the time she was battling cancer, and I thought - well, if she can deal with radiation and chemo and physical therapy and all the other yucky stuff that goes into having cancer, well, I can certainly figure out how to run 3.1 miles.  And then while I was training .... well, Gabby died.  I HAD to keep running.  Maybe that sounds weird, but I just felt like I needed to finish what I started.  While I ran I often thought about her and her family and would just pray.  It  became a little holy experience for me.  I found I really liked running alone, just me and my thoughts. 

I wish I could have run the whole entire race.  That was my goal.  But for a mom of 3, finding time to train is hard, and in the end, I did the best I could.  So I am really happy with myself.  In fact, I think I was kind of obnoxious at the finish line.  I hammed it up and paused for pictures and wanted to bust out some hip-hop moves at the finish line (but from that I refrained....)  All in all - it was really (if you can call pushing yourself to the point that you can hardly walk the next day) fun! 

Another special aspect of this race for me is that it happened where our church, Grace Valley Fellowship, meets.  Our church actually scrapped having a service and decided to have our church members be involved in helping out.  I was so proud and excited and honored to have a lot of my church friends there to be a part of it!  My pastor was even able to lead a short prayer service after the race, so people could be involved in praying for Gabby's family, our community, and for all of those who are touched by someone with cancer.

I already posted these on fb but for my own records, I am adding my photos here too!

 And they're off!
 Huffing and puffing my way to the finish line.
 CROSSING the finish line!
 With my neighbors Julie & Kelly
 With my friend Lyn
With Carter at the prayer service.

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith."
2 Timothy 4:7
A verse that means a whole lot more to me now!

1 comment:

ErinOrtlund said...

I think you did great! It's understandable you would walk a bit on hills. Now you have a good baseline and if you run another 5K you can try for 38:38, then 37:37, etc.! :)