Its everyone’s favourite time of year! Maritime Race Weekend!
This time last year I was just starting to accept the fact that I had knee issues and I was going to have to take a break from running. MRW was my last 5k that I ran before almost a year off running.
This year I was about 30 lbs heavier, hadn’t ran a 5k in a year, and was extremely nervous. The first 2.5k were good, I felt that feeling that you feel when you’re running and you just know that you look strong. Your knees are high, your pushing off, propelling yourself forward. You feel graceful. You’re passing people. You could probably be on the cover of Runner’s World. I had two of the best people I know running along with me, MB was saying all the right things, keeping me motivated and hardly even huffing and puffing at all. We started this 5k with a goal of finishing.
A little back story for you. MB has a goal to run a 5k in under a certain time frame. She’s been chasing this goal for a while. We both took a little hiatus from running and joined the Learn to Run clinic together in July. She’s lost some weight (yay!) and she’s been running stronger and stronger.
Now back to our regularly scheduled program. We get to the 5k turn around point and I do a little math in my head and I take into consideration that I’m starting to feel some pain in my knee, my IT is getting tighter by the stride, MB has been breezing through the last 2.5k, I know what our time is and I know what we have left and I know that I need to let her go. She is about 10-15 strides ahead of me and Mel dropped back to check on me and I said to her, “Take her and go…she can do it (reach her goal).” “Are you sure?” “Yes, 100%. Go.” She catches back up to MB, MB turns around and her eyes say, “Are you sure?” And I blow her a kiss and off she goes. It was the right decision. Within a kilometre I can’t see her anymore, 1/2 because she’s running so fast and 1/2 because the sun is setting and I still have my sunglasses on. For the next kilometre I pray in my head, let her do this, go MB go, you can do it, you’ve got this, please let her achieve this goal, go MB.
That brings me to about 3.5-4k. I start to hurt. I am still running but my right hip, knee, and foot are in pain. I’m glad that I am alone and I can take a couple 30 second walk breaks to help ease the shooting pain in my foot. There’s a girl that I pass, she passes me, I pass her, I walk, she catches up to me, I run, I walk, she catches me…she keeps me going (even without knowing it she got me through the last kilometre). I finish!
I go get a massage. The lady was working my IT band and she was like “Oh you’re in pain.” Yup, no kidding lady. But she works some magic and I feel some relief.
MB did not reach her goal. She missed it by 2 seconds. My heart breaks for her, so close. I can’t help but think that if she hadn’t stuck around with me for the first 2.5k that she would have reached it. She was so comfortable for those first 2.5 and just maybe if she would have left me earlier she could have reached her goal. She says that she finished so strong because she took it a little easier for the first half. She’s very sweet.
Day 2. 10k walk. Mel, MB, and I walked the entire 10k. I want to say strong. I hurt. I had a shin splint for the first 2k and then the IT/knee/foot pain kicked in. I slowed them down. I struggled to keep up. Regardless we had a good time. We had lots of laughs, we picked off a few walkers, we saw incredible views, and at the end we received 2 more beautiful medals for our accomplishments.
I just can’t help but feel sad when I think about the fact that my running future is so uncertain. If I can’t run, if I can’t keep up with my friends I can’t do events like this, what do I do?
All in all, the weekend was wonderful. I love Mel and MB so much. They are just great people. A girl could not ask for better friends and I know that running or not running we will be friends, we have proved that over the past year when I was not running but remained close. I just miss my friend, pain free running.