I am sitting here with the keys below my fingers stoked. That is what 40 year olds say for excited!
My RACE Recap:
I will keep it simple.
POT O GOLD FLINT MI.
4 MILE ROAD RACE
The best thing about turning 40 is a new age group! And for me this year it was not just a new age group it was also a new division..MASTERS!
Andy got home from work and drove me and Alec up to the race. I get so nervous that it often times triggers my forgetfulness. So having Andy driving Miss Nita was a blessing. An Irish Blessing?
This year I was praying for a lot of Irish blessings. With this being my first race of the season, it would be a gateway to see where the last 16 weeks of indoor training had taken me.
The crowds were smaller than normal. The extreme temps defined the runners who battled out the weather this season and who did not.
I was dressed to the max in my Irish best and worst! My Sport Kilt was by far my best but the bowtie was as goofy as could be!
The weather was better than I had expected with the temperature in the 30's. The sun was warm, reaching its heat around me.
We reached the start line about 25 minutes early. Andy said "Ok Nita, go do some strides and stretch out your legs."
I took off down Kearsley into some easy strides and was totally exhausted as I headed out.
"Oh my, Is this going to define my race?" I began to worry.
I did the straight way 2 more times in hopes that I would feel better. No such luck. I was not feeling the Luck of the Irish.
We lined up at the start of the race. My stomach was in knots. I had no idea what this race would show me.
Andy was shouting out times he wanted me to run. That made me even more nervous. I didn't want to disappoint him, and his time he wanted me to run seemed outrageous.
"What if I am too old?"
"What if I am washed up and it was time to just except it."
There were so many voices in my head I lost track of time.
"Anita, get up to the line." Andy pushed me to the taped line across the road. I am not a show boat so I really just wanted to hide in the middle.
"Nita, it is a shot gun time, don't be shy, GET UP THERE." he yelled at me.
Sheepishly, I went to the front, convincing myself that every second counted.
And the gun went off!
|Ran into some Friends!|
The first mile I always try to find where I belong. I look at who is around me, trying to find someone I can pace off of. This year with the numbers being down there were not as many people around me.
There was a young boy about 100 feet ahead of me. I just kept me eyes on the back of his blue coat.
After the 1st mile at a 6:45 pace, I decided there was a good possibility I took off too fast.
But I couldn't take my eyes off "the boy".
As I came up on mile 2, "the boy" was losing his steam.
"Come on, stay strong." I yelled at him from behind.
I tried to encourage him, but I had no other choice but to pass him.
I found that my passing him was more of a motivation for him. So I coached him from the front.
"That's it, You got this." I yelled louder as I heard his foot steps behind me.
"Your doing GREAT, Keep it UP!" I cheered. He sounded farther and farther away.
I was searching in desperation for mile 3. I knew it had to be close, as close as death was to me at that point. This part of the race was a bit more flat. It was a welcomed death sentence. My legs just went into auto pilot. I bit down on pain and fatigue. I didn't need LUCK at this point, I NEEDED a Miracle!
There were so many cameras. It felt like the Pot O Gold Paparazzi. I am sure there are going to be some really ugly photos of me.
I heard heavy breathing behind me. As I passed mile three I got nervous with the presence of another runner so close to me. It is the worst feeling in the world to have someone pass you on the home stretch. I repeatedly told myself to "HOLD IT" and "STAY STRONG". Everything in me fought my mantra.
The last mile was right out of a horror film. I remembered it was tough but I forgot all the hills. It quickly went from the "Pot O Gold"to the "Pot O Cold" as the wind blasted you going up another hill. My body felt like it had a rubber band around it. I could hardly will it to go up another incline.
"It is just a HILL get over it." I tried to make myself laugh. But I could still hear HIS foot steps so close.
"Stay Up Nita, Look for the Finish LINE."
I made that final turn scanning the road for the finish. I could see Andys bright yellow coat.
I did not want to disappoint him. With everything I didn't have in me I picked up my pace. I let the fear of disappointment and fear of being passed drive me to the finish.
I LOVE the sounds of people cheering you on at a finish line. I love the voice of my family there for me.
"You were 3rd FEMALE overall MOM!!" Alec shouted.
I couldn't breath to respond. I wanted to collapse.
Grasping for air to speak, I sadly said, "I didn't PR, did I?"
Andy smiled and said, "No hunny, not this year."
I wasn't to upset over it.
We went inside the Masonic Temple to see the results.
It was really nice how the race had the results presented. They had small computers set up. All you had to do with put in your bib number and your results came up.
I almost died when I saw my results. Died Laughing! 1st place Masters! This was a first!
It was a great race. One of my favorites. Very well organized as usual.
I left the race with a smile of success. Reminding myself "I can do all things through Christ who Strengthens me."
I looked up last years times at home and discovered IT WAS A Personal Record for this RACE!!
That I am "More Than a Conqueror."
I am so grateful for His Love for me. Humbled and Undeserving.