Alarm clock. Beeping. This is the day. Today I'm going to do it. Jesus, it's cold! Woo - like SERIOUSLY cold. Turn the heat on. Bathroom. Wake up. Breathe. Wake up. Breathe. Pet the cat - morning buddy. I'm doing this. I'm going to run. Yoga pants, sports bra, tech shirt, banana, water. Back to the bathroom. Nervous pee. Damn, it is so frickin cold! Socks, shoes, stretch. iPod. Outside - I can see my breath. Breathe. Good. Tuesday was too hot. I like running in the cold. I like that I can see my breath. Hello winter. Out into the world. Cross the street, turn on my tunes. New running mix - awesome. Walk, walk, have to warm up. "We will not be broken, we will be victorious" love Muse. Great warm-up song. Puts me in the right frame of mind. Here we go. Blur - Song 2. WOOHOO! RUN! Breathe, relax your shoulders, warm up the legs. Turn the corner, run through leaves. It's interesting how the wind pools them all like that. REALLY cold. Hello fox lawn ornament. Am I already there? Slow down, pace, pace. About 5 minutes in. How do I feel? Breathing is good. Relax the shoulders. Turn the corner. Sun is shining, starting to warm up now. Sun light through the park fence. It's like a strobe light as I run by. Turn the corner. Long stretch before the one mile marker. "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" thanks Kanye. Feeling good. Relax the shoulders. Legs are ok. Breathe deep, imagine any discomfort pushing down through the legs and out through the feet. Settle in. Breathe. One mile. Turn the corner. I hate this stretch. But it's not long - just push through it. Turn the corner. Long haul to Western. You've got this. You feel good. Better than you usually feel at this point. "We've only got 4 minutes to save the world". Do it. Easy does it to Western. Past the school. You used to be dying at this point. Look how amazing you're doing right now. Easy does it to Western. Turn the corner. One block. One more corner. OK - this is the rough patch. You're doing great. Gotta make it back to Hoyne. Damn Hoyne. I hate that street - it's SO far away. Two miles. I've got one left in me for sure. Pace, pace. Just go easy. "So, so what? I'm still a rockstar!" thanks P!NK - you're getting me through this. Only 3 more songs and you're done. One more block - HOYNE! Hallelujah. Turn the corner, one block - hello big doggie and cute owner - yum. Smile, wave...turn the corner, more leaves. Back to Western. This is where C25K training ended. And I'm going the distance this time. I'm doing the WHOLE thing. Pace, pace. Slow down. This isn't a race...well, it IS a race, but not today. Today is about doing it. Coming up on Western now. Still feel good. Not really out of breath. 2.5 miles. Turn the corner. Run home. You got this. Grocery store to home. You can walk that in, like, 4 minutes. Running it is easy. Not thinking about my legs anymore. Settle in. Feet are great. Breathe. Pace, pace. Not cold anymore. Sun is shining. HELL YES I am doing this. I got it. Past home - now it's just about the finish line. Don't speed. Just make it there. 3 blocks. "It makes me that much stronger, thanks for makin' me a Fighter" - bring it home Christina. Just have to run to the end of this song. I can see the last block. I can still see my breath. Finish line! I DID IT!!!
At this point, all by myself on an empty street, I pumped my fist in the air and broke into tears, steam pouring off my body. The feeling of accomplishment and fatigue came over me and I could hardly catch my breath for the sobs escaping my lungs. I slowed to a walk for my favorite cool down songs and just let the tears come. I did it. For weeks I have been so scared that I wouldn't make it to the distance before my race next weekend. I was suffering from negative self-speak, telling myself that I couldn't do it. But - today I did. And now there's nothing left to tell me I can't, because I know I can. I'm still nervous about the race, but today I proved to myself that I can do whatever I want to. I finished with a good stretch and a hot shower. I am beautiful. I am a runner. Bring on next weekend. I can't wait to meet all my SparkFriends and run for chocolate in downtown Chicago!
Official Stats from today:
Here's my route (Yep - it's a 5...I'm a geek)
If I can bring it in under 40 minutes next weekend, I'll be ecstatic! I am so proud of what I can do. Never in a million years did I ever think that I would be capable of running 3.1 miles in under 40 minutes. And now that I'm here, it's on to the next hurdle - running a 10K for the start of next year's race season.
Well - just get through the 5K first, Jenn :)
You got it!