Monday, October 05, 2009

thoughts on a ten mile run

Yesterday, six friends and I ran the Army Ten Miler in Washington, D.C. read that right. I ran TEN MILES.

Can you believe it? Neither can I.

This year my new year's resolution was to learn to run so that I could do a 5k. By March I was able to run 3 miles without stopping. It was quite an accomplishment as I have NEVER run before. Ever. Anywhere. Even in high school, where we were all supposed to run the mile...I walked it.

So you can imagine my disappointment when the race I had wanted to enter filled up before I registered. But a bit of my bravado kicked in when I read about the annual army race.

I thought...."well, we've gotten up to 3 miles...whats 6 or 7 more? We have 7 months." And so I convinced my fellow training friends that we could learn to run that far. Mind you, learning to run 10 miles is an entirely different concept in mid-August than it was in April.

I saw a shirt at the race that said, "this seemed like a good idea three months ago."


But we persevered. We ran every Saturday (even on vacation!), we ran a lot during the week and somehow we made it to Sunday's race.

And I KICKED BUTT! (humility has never been one of my strong suits)

Not because I won---HA! I run 12 minute miles. The fellow that won finished before I was even at the halfway point.

But I kicked butt because I did it. I ran the whole way. Didn't stop. I had a great time---my wonderful husband brought the boys out to cheer me on and they even met me at the end with flowers. I was giddy with my friends, I was surprisingly fast at the end and today I am tired. But I am ready to look at the spring races and I am ready to see what might be next on my "to do" list.

A few memories from the day....

the joy of finding a real bathroom at the hotel before the race
the insane lines of people waiting for port a potties.
Cheering people on at the port a potties...while Karina yelled, "SUCK it olson"
The little old lady running in front of me (she HAD to be pushing 80)
The grandpas I passed who asked if I had vodka in my camel back
The absolute joy I felt when I saw my boys and my hubby cheering for me....I don't know who was more or them!
The bravery of the wounded warriors who were giving it their all during the race
The odd coincidence that the Rocky theme came on my MP3 player right as the band began playing it at mile 8
The thrill of seeing the finish line and knowing I still had enough left in me to sprint.

Wow. I know this is long and I know it's a bit braggy...but was fun!

Thanks for reading this far.

Cherry Blossom 10 miler anyone???


bandwidow said...

Yay! I'm so impressed! Good good work, and so nice to hear what's been goin' on with you lately.

Vivi said...

Well, to be fair, all the cool kids walked the mile. ;)

Seriously, CONGRATS!!! That is such a huge accomplishment!

Meanwhile, I'm waiting to go to the Dr this morning because I think I've torn a muscle in my aerobics class last night... I'm too delicate for this exercise stuff! :P

Anonymous said...

Again, I will say, your dad and I are SO PROUD of you!!! Way to go-I still don't know how you did it, even when I witnessed it in NC!! Are you sure you are from the C'lura, Cola' family? I have to say, I think you are the first runner in the family, unless you count Ben in HS. Now how much do you have to run, weekly, to keep in shape? By the way, you should brag--that's quite an accomplishment!!!! love you, mom

tania said...

congratulations!!! such an awesome achievement!

Rae said...

Congratulations! I am trying to get back into running and really look forward to the day when I can run ten miles. Keep it up!

beth said...

Love it! Good for you! Ordinary grace sure, but equal parts amazing grace.

ANKIT said...

Hey Grace.. I m Dr. Ankit Gupta(dentist), I dnt knw u bt as ws searchng next nd next, ur blog came... This particular post is just Awesome... I also write blogs..
U literaly evoked a positive energy in me... Gr8 wrk.. Truly inspiring...