Wednesday, June 8, 2016

DAY 1733... I Can Do Hard Things.... The Teton Dam Races

People in Rexburg, ID go crazy for the Teton Dam Marathon.
Any excuse for them to say "dam" even though it's not even the right word.
They call themselves "dam volunteers",
and you can hear them say, "I'm running that dam race,"
and they always talk about how many "dam" miles they ran.
It's weird.

I had started training using the C25K app,
something I had started a million times before but had never followed through with,
but this time,
for whatever reason,
I totally followed through with the program.
I completed the 8 weeks of training!
I started not being able to run more than 90 seconds without feeling like dying,
and I ended being able to run 4+ miles without stopping.
Who had I become?
I was that person who got up at 6am in the morning to run.
That is so weird!
I love Rexburg at 6am!
Love it!

So 8 weeks of training and it was time to see if it was worth it.
I didn't sleep for the 3 nights leading up to the race,
and my stomach was not so happy the morning of.
I had so much anxiety regarding this race.
Would I meet my goal?
Would I be able to actually do this?
Would I fall and look like a fool?
Would people think I was a horrible runner.
Not that that last one really mattered,
but it still crossed my mind.
I was feeling a little overwhelmed and so nervous!

I had the perfect playlist,

I had new socks,
I had a second pair of headphones on me just in case my wireless ones stopped working.
I had my apple watch ready to go.
I was ready.

The first mile or so I couldn't control my breathing and I couldn't stop shaking.
I was really glad that I had taken the time the week before to walk the course and get familiar with it,
but that first mile was rough.
Anxiety is the WORST!
Because I had walked the course I knew where the 1.5 and 2.5 mile markers were,
which in my opinion,
made a HUGE difference.
I like to be prepared and organized.
I'm definitely not one of those fly by the seat of your pants kind of girls.
I like to know what's going on.

Around 1.75 miles I got really light headed and dizzy.
I couldn't even run straight.
I was going from one side of the sidewalk to the other,
when I was intending to run straight.
I have no idea what happened.
I had eaten breakfast,
I was hydrated.
It was probably just nerves,
but I thought I was going to fall over and die.

I pushed through it though and didn't even stop.
Around 2.25 miles it got easier for me.
Of course they had a tiny hill towards the end of the course,
but as soon as you reached the top you could see the finish line,
and from there I just booked it.
It was over.

At the finish line I was surprised to see my family waiting for me with signs and roses,
and cow bells.
Someone gave my kids cow bells and I want to die.
They are the worst!
Let me rephrase that actually.
I wasn't surprised to see my family,
I knew they were there to support me,
but I was surprised to see the signs and the flowers.

I had looked back at my old times from the two past times I had run this 5K before the race.
First in 2007 and second in 2008,
long before I had babies (this makes a HUGE difference) and about 40lbs lighter.
I knew what my times were then.
I considered myself to be much more athletic and fit during those races.
Probably a thousand times more so than I am now.
You can find me at number 33 and number 12.

I was careful never to check my time on my watch during the race.
Instead I focused on speed.
Well kind of.
I know I'm not fast,
but I really wanted to stay under 11 minute miles.
Apple watches are REALLY cool!

Several minutes after I crossed the finish line I got a text with my official finish time.

I was shocked!

My original goal was under 30.
But that was my very first day of training,
and after getting to know my body a little better,
and some research,
I decided that I wanted to get under 34:53.


I was so happy with my performance and my time.
Maybe someday I will get under 30 minutes,
but it just wasn't right for my body for this race.

I knew I had finished a little earlier than 35 minutes,
because of my playlist.
I really wanted to cross the finish line listening to "You're the Best" from Karate Kid,
but I didn't even get to that song.
Kind of a bummer because that song is AMAZING,
but still really really awesome that I finished earlier than I thought I would!

It just goes to show how training and preparing and pushing yourself,
really can yield amazing results!
I don't have to be the thinnest runner to be fast.
You don't have to have the most expensive equipment.
You don't have to have the cutest clothes,
although cute workout clothes are the BEST,
but you don't need anything except your body,
your desire,
and you have to have a good playlist and you can achieve the impossible.
I honestly didn't think I was capable of achieving that time,
especially after looking back at my old times.
To me,
that 5K was like my marathon!
I didn't think I could successfully train for 8 weeks.
But I did it all!
I did it all!
I can do hard things!

A few hours after I finished my race,
Aniston had her race.
She had watched me train for 8 weeks and was insistent on being able to run as well.
I signed her up for the kids race which was 1/2 mile long.
I wasn't sure she would make it,
but she was very excited about it.
She asked every day for 6 weeks if it was her race day.
She even wanted to have braids in her hair for her race,
just like I had for her race.

It was perfect!

We had decided that Spencer would run with her,
just to keep her nerves down and so that she would feel comfortable.
Aniston Kate ran the entire time!

She didn't stop once!
She never walked,
not even an inch!

She set a goal to beat the banana man (the Jamba Juice mascot ran with them since they sponsored the race)
and she did!
I was such a proud mama!

She LOVES her medal!

It was quite the challenge convincing her that she didn't need to  wear it to church.
She shows everyone her medal.
We went out to eat afterwards and she showed every single person in sight!
The waiter,
the hostess,
other diners.
She even only ate with 1 hand so that she could keep her other hand on her medal.

She loves that it looks just like mine except smaller.

It was a great day!
Aniston and I have already signed up for our next race in July.
I love that I could set this example for my daughter.
That was what this was all about.
It was about becoming better,
not only for myself,
but for my children.
And to show them that you can do hard things and that you can reach your goals.
I love that she even chose to set a goal for her race without any prompting.
It was a great day!

And this morning...
I started training for a 10K.
I think I've caught the running bug!

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