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Sunday, May 15, 2011

5K = 3.1 miles (can you walk it?)

As you know I'd been preparing to walk my first 5K and as I told you in a previous post my sister, Brenda, asked me if I wanted to walk a 5K and before I had a chance to think about it I said yes and then quickly registered because let's face it if I've paid money it is way harder to back out on something!  So, Friday night Dan and I headed up to Wisconsin and met Brenda, Mom and Dad.

Brenda and I before the race
Saturday morning came and I was about as excited as when I woke up on Christmas morning as a kid.  This was it!!  I was pumped as I got dressed and made a bowl of oatmeal.  Then, I realized it was raining and I was a little less pumped.  I'd never walked before in the rain.  Ugh, this was going to be awful because not only was it raining but it was WINDY and a little colder than I'd prefer.

Regardless, the five of us piled in the car and drove to Eagle River for the race.  We picked up our race packets and goody bag and then headed back to the car to wait for the start.  We made a quick trip to Walgreen's so Brenda could put on long pants and we could use the bathroom.  On our way out we found some 2/$2 rain ponchos (who can pass up a good deal on such a necessity?!) and then we were ready.

Here we go!!
While waiting for the race to start I met up with my friend Shawn (who was also running the 5K and had a PR, by the way) and her husband Matt and the kids and had a few minutes to chat about how the rain was really just going to encourage our pace!!  Soon, it was time to leave the warmth of the car and go wait at the starting line.  And then, they fired the starting gun.  According to the video Mom shot this was very shocking because she jumped at the sound!!

Originally, the plan was going to be Brenda and I walking together.  As I started training though I started to think that I'd really rather walk alone so I could set the pace I wanted and I told Brenda this.  She said she would probably run the race and then rather than just stopping and waiting she would come and meet me and then walk the rest of the way back with me.  So, when the race started Brenda and Shawn hit the course like the champion race runners they are and I kept toward the back of the pack to avoid being in the way.  But we were off...

I got to the halfway point, grabbed my cup of water and kept pushing forward.  I was less than a mile from the finish when I saw some traffic coming toward us (I was following two other walkers) when I realized there was also a person running towards us.  True to her word, there was my sister coming to meet me and walk the rest of the way back with me.  I don't know why but immediately and every time I think of the sight of her with her red winter hat, blue long sleeve shirt and yellow poncho coming towards me my eyes tear up.  It was great fun to have that time with her and celebrate the accomplishment, just the two of us.

Nearing the finish line and still rocking out!
Anyway, as we neared the finish, she left the course (so she wouldn't cross the finish line again) and let me continue forward.  As I got nearer I could hear my Mom yelling for me and saw Dan taking pictures.  A few steps later I saw Shawn and Matt cheering me on too and then I saw Dad and Brenda there screaming for me.  Seriously, how lucky am I to have these people come and cheer me on?

I finished last place in my age group but I don't care.  I finished my first ever 5K in 57 minutes and 41 seconds.  This was almost 2 minutes faster than any of the times I'd walked it at home (though I blame the dogs and their need to poop and smell stuff for that!)

Oh, and for those who said (or bet) that this would only be the beginning to doing more races, well, you were right.  I'm already looking at signing up for another one, which would make it my third 5K this year!  My 2nd one is coming up on Sunday in McHenry.  I can't wait.

1 comment:

  1. I used to work with Brenda and I so impressed with what you have accomplished. I started walking a year ago along with Weightwatchers and have lost 50+ #so I know the effort that you have put into this. I would never have believed a year ago that walking 3+ miles a day would be part of my lifestyle now. You go girl!

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