I am one of those people…
If you have ever raced you know them.. the people that run before races and after races. I never thought I would be one of them. I used to shyly stand off to the side and pretend to stretch while they ran by. I would try to find another girl or two that looked slow like me to line up with. Every once in a while I would try to make small talk with someone who looked as insecure as I felt. All of these thin, fast runners. I felt out of place. I was alone and about to “run” in front of strangers, hoping they wouldn’t judge. I would run my heart out and get to the finish. For the smaller races I was often by myself so I would just head to my car and leave. Very uneventful… luckily for my first half marathon I had my wonderful parents. I love to have them there with me.
Fast forward a couple of years… I still love to have my parents with me at the end, but when are not there I now have a bunch of runner friends. We train together and race together. The last two races I have done I showed up early and had plenty of people to talk to and pass the time. We even did warm-up miles before the races… haha… who would have thunk it. It is fun being out there with the other runners preparing for the miles ahead.
Even better are the cool down runs after the race. To be strong enough now to keep going when all I used to want to do is get in my car and leave. Incredible.
I still like the bigger races – I am not saying that I feel completely comfortable running small races in front of people. I am still at the back of the pack, but it is getting easier. Hopefully I will keep getting faster so I am not at as far back all the time!
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