Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Thank you for giving me my wings...

My first race was the Baltimore Women's Classic 5k and it took place on June 28,2009. I had just started my interval training earlier that year and had only started "running" a short time before this race. There were two other runners with me that day. One, my good friend Wendy and the other, her good friend Chuck. Thanks to Wendy, we had become Team Bug. I was the lady bug, Wendy the butterfly and Chuck, the dragon fly. We were an awesome team.

I started running in part, because of Wendy. She and another friend of ours would meet up in the wee hours of the morning before the week day started, but the two of them would go about their 3 mile run and I would do my 2 mile walk. My hope was to eventually be able to join them. By the time I got good enough to join them, they weren't running in the mornings anymore, if at all.

So here we are, the day of the race, the three of us happily dressed as bugs, ready to get our flight on and I had conflicting feelings about this race and up until the moment the race started, I wasn't sure what my plan was. Wendy had asked me to run the race with her and Chuck and because of that, I felt I should keep pace with her. However, by then my pace had picked up a bit and running with her meant not running at my best. I have never been a competative person. I always hated sports and how you'd be put down if you weren't as fast as the other kids or didn't do as well and so, it wasn't in my nature to want to "beat" anyone. However, if I was going to run a race, I wanted to have the best possible time I could manage. As the race started, the adreneline kicked in and it was that moment that I decided I was going to run this race for me. I finished in 32 minutes and 02 seconds with a 10:47 min per mile average pace. That was the fastest I'd ever run a 5k. I felt great crossing that finish line and knew it was the first of many races to come.

So here we are, a year later and although I've run a 10k and even a 10 miler since, I was back to once again run the Baltimore Women's Classk 5k on June 27, 2010. My goal this time was to set a PR, a personal record. My goal was to beat my time from my first race. This time it was just me running the race and because I had no help, I didn't wear my wings. Instead, I wore a lady bug t-shirt that I'd worn for my 10 mile race. It wasn't the same without Team Bug and the official costume but the race day fun and excitment from all the other runners had me all a buzz. I started out with the the 10 min pace group, knowing I'd at least hit my 10 min mile goal but was hoping for better and I got it. As soon as the gun went off, I took off, giving it every once of energy I had. Not only did I beat my time, but I blew it out of the water - 27 minutes and 57 seconds. I had a 9 minute pace, my best ever. I look forward to trying to beat my time again next year.

As for the butterfly in my first race, I had just enough energy to run my way through the incoming crowd and search her out. I may not have ran the race with her, but I was delighted to join her as she crossed the finish line.

Thank you, Wendy, for giving my wings.

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