Sunday, June 28, 2009

Crazy Corn Runner

5:00am the alarm goes off, FAR too early for my liking. I lie there and debate.
"Do I really want to get up?"
"Yes, my inner voice says sleepily, you're never going to go back to sleep now."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes, get up."
"But, can't I try?"
"No. Get up."
5:30 I've eaten a banana, had a cup of water, gotten dressed, camelpack fanny pack on and I'm out the door. Route is planned and on the computer for Dan. Cell phone in hand, I leave my sleeping boys to enter the pre-dawn twilight.
First two miles are always a bitch... trying to get my rhythm and wake up, but soon I've got a bit of a groove going. That doesn't mean I don't do some more internal debating.
"Let's take a walk break."
"Are you kidding me? We're not EVEN at 3 miles yet."
"But I'm tired."
"No. Maybe at 4 miles, but come on this half marathon is over 13 miles."
"Please?" in a bitty voice, knowing I'm losing
"No. You suck. Keep running."
And I do. Keep running. One step at a time. Occassionally I get lost in thoughts of work, friends, stuff that needs to be done at the house... general everyday planning. It's always a surprise to come back to myself and wonder how long I was on autopilot. Since I've not completed the 7 miles, I'd say I came "back" too soon. I lift my hands and say a little prayer to God, grateful for the beautiful sunrise, the cool shade and my health in being able to run.
Soon I'm passing by miles of cornfields and even over the sound of my music that helps keep my feet moving I hear the birds. Such sweet melody and they are singing just for me. Over the tops of the rows and rows of golden sunlit corn tassels, I see My Mountain and marvel at it's beauty. At that moment, I wouldn't want to be anywhere else.

That soon changes. Beyond the corn and back near the school on mile 5.5, I am hit with horrible side cramps that force me to walk .5 to .75 of my 7 mile run. After a few painful false re-starts, fighting tears of frustration and debating whether to call Dan to rescue me or not, I decide to give it one last whirl. I start a painfully slow jog, feeling a slight twinge in my rib cage. I press on. Slowly. With 1.5 miles to home, I jog at a 12 to 12.5 minute mile. I feel okay and take a slightly longer route home giving me an extra .4 miles to make my total run time nearly 7 miles. It took 1:30:32 and I estimated about 1:10 or 1:15, but I made it. Another one under the belt and one step closer to the 13.1 miles. I'm pleased with the accomplishment and look forward to the next run.