Today Was A Good Day

I wish I was a good enough writer to accurately depict the joy I’ve experienced today.  I’m not that good, so I’ll just do the best I can…

To celebrate (commemorate?) Memorial Day, I walked the Gate to Gate Run/Walk race on Eglin AFB (thanks to a damn good friend who made sure I had no excuse).  It’s 4.4 miles of nothing but heat and humidity…gotta love Florida in May…the most I’ve walked in the past 6 months is about 3 miles…so I was woefully unprepared…or so I thought…

Let me clue you in on something…I love, love, LOVE to race…when I was still running, that was the whole point.  I trained from race to race always trying to beat my last time.  Running or walking, I’ll never be the fastest.  But who cares?  I compete against ME…it’s the perfect outlet for my overcompetitive nature…

And sadly, since Sean was born, I have barely raced…it all sort of ended when I couldn’t really run anymore.  (Short story: I totally overdid it a couple of times trying to increase my mileage, blew my knee, never got it rehabbed, and now running on asphalt, concrete, whatever, HURTS – I’m getting a treadmill and will start from scratch.)

In fact, the last time I was in THIS race, I was pregnant with Sean.  I did several races while I was pregnant with Sean…the last one 2 months before he was born – a July race, and I had to pee the whole time.

I love the wind in my hair.  I love passing people.  I love NOT letting people pass me.  I love the pain of pushing myself faster and faster.  I love finding that person ahead of me that I WILL pass. I even love that little voice of doubt that says, “Can you keep this pace for long?”  (The answer is a big HELL YEAH!)  I love that little kick you give it at the end (because you ALWAYS finish strong).  And today, especially, I loved not thinking about ANYTHING but the race and trying to keep a steady pace.

I can block out anything and everything during a race.  In that moment, when it’s all about putting one foot in front of the other and NOT giving up (no matter what), I’m not a mom, I’m not going through a divorce, I’m not a neurotic-mess-of-a-woman who has no clue how to be single, I’m a competitor

And when I say I can block out anything, I mean ANYTHING.  Like the blister that formed in the first half mile that bled all over my sock and shoe…didn’t even put a band-aid on it until about 45 minutes after I finished.  Like needing to pee in the first quarter mile which means I didn’t stop for water, either…

The big joke is that I never have a cheering section when I finish…even when there should be.  Today was no exception.  No one thought I would finish when I did, so Aidan and Sean were still playing on the playground as I crossed the finishline…thank God I don’t do this for anyone but me! 

In my circle, all races end with food, usually breakfast – specifically, eggs and bacon.  It’s the proverbial carrot at the end of the stick.  For some reason, it tasted even better today…No post-race nap for me but I didn’t mind…I was way too relaxed to care about naps. 

I found my joy again.  Today, I reunited with something that fills me with pure, unadulterated happiness…and I am NOT going to let it slip away again.  If you need me, I’ll be preparing for my next race.

Oh, and not that it matters, but my official time was 1:05:52 (15 minute mile), 8th in my age group out of 32…not too shabby for being unprepared.  I can’t wait to see how I do once I start actually training.

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About Michaela Mitchell

A few things come to mind easily when I think of myself - a mom, a friend, a daughter, a hard-worker. But there's so much more to me - and I just have to discover what it is.

Posted on May 30, 2011, in Joy, Moments in Life and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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