Today I ran with no regard.
I put one foot in front of the other and did the damn thing.
See, I wasn’t feelin’ it. The night before I considered not going. But that would be a waste of $48 and I’m not one to waste money. Nope.
Then I started looking for excuses- but I’m so tired, but I have this random knot/bruise/thingie on my left thigh and it’s really bothering me… but, but, but.
But get your butt up and get it done is what I said to myself.
So at 5 am, I rolled out of bed, got dressed and drove out to Safety Harbor to conquer my first 10K race. I got emotional at the singing of the National Anthem (as I always do) and decided then and there that I wasn’t going to look at my watch.
The only person that you’re racing against is yourself.
I’m not a professional runner. This isn’t my career. Nothing is riding on this.
So why the pressure?
Nope. I was just going to run. So as my feet touched that mat, I said to myself “my race, my pace” and I was off.
I had some great help from the Notorious B.I.G., A$AP Rocky, Sia, Justin Bieber, Rihanna, Fetty Wap and others along the way. Funny how freeing it is to set your Spotify to “Shuffle Play” as opposed to creating a race day playlist. I checked out. I ran, kept my eyes ahead of me, with not one thought in my mind- just go.
I will admit that when I saw the sign for miles 3 and 5 I checked my watch, realized that I was close to beating my PR for the 5K & 5-Mile distances and kicked it into high gear to do just that. (I beat both by 1 minute, I’ll take it- thank you) Once I did that, though, I covered my watch up with my sleeve and kept at it.
I did end up beating my current time for the 6-mile distance, but best of all, I was able to run a race without the pressure on myself. I can be so hard on me- wanting to be a better runner NOW forgetting that this takes time and with practice I will get better, faster, and stronger.
Today, I watched the sun come up. I felt the cold air on my face. I looked out at the beautiful water. I took it all in… and I ran a great race. (And still made it home in time to get to my daughter’s basketball game)
I’m glad I got out there and ran. I’m glad that I was able to be kind to myself, while still pushing myself. Sometimes our expectations for our own selves can be so high and we can forget to enjoy the ride.
My advice? Don’t forget. Enjoy it. You’ll be glad you did.