"So how did you get this idea...to run a midnight 5k?"
"A press release came across my desk for it and I thought it sounded like fun." Isn't that how every I'm-going-to-run-a-5k-decision is born?
That's how my physical challenges seem to happen. I read the press release and think, "Eh, I could do that." And then I recruit a friend to do it with me, and there is always at least one who agrees.
"Yeah, I'm not doing anything Friday night. I'll do it with you."
I walked in her house at 9:30 p.m.
"I don't want to do this," I said.
"I don't want to run," she replied. "I'm going to be mad as hell at you."
I woke her up from her nap at 10:30 p.m.
"We've got to go."
"I thought you'd think I looked so peaceful asleep that you'd decide not to do this."
First stop: gas station.
"We're cranking up the AC," she said. "We've got to get our fill before we die."
We took 58 self portraits.
She thought she looked high; I thought I looked fat.
"Just post one of the damn photos," she said. "We're running a marathon for crying out loud."
She put on some pump-up music, which we both agreed did nothing for us.
"Your husband should have come," I said. "I'm going to need his sports medicine skills."
We pulled into the parking lot of the grocery store where the race was to start.
"Oh my god, Leanna," I said. "These people look very serious."
We registered and retreated to her vehicle.
"I need somewhere private to put this on," I said, motioning to my number.
"I need as much AC as possible before we get this started. Also, I want to finish my nap," she said.
Twenty minutes later, we lined up.
"Identity your victim," she said. "The person you think you can beat."
I surveyed the crowd.
"Okay, found one."
"How long do you want this to take us?" she asked. "What's your goal?"
"45 minutes," I replied.
"We'll start in the back," she said, her inner soccer coach coming out.
"I like the way you think," I nodded. "That way we can pass people..."
..."it'll help our self-esteem," she finished.
The toy gun went off.
I wanted to beat everyone, but forced myself to settle into my comfortable pace. She was beside me and then a bit ahead of me, her pace quicker than mine.
We ran the first mile and a half and I promptly wanted to die.
"No, don't stop! Run this little way and then when we get to the stop sign we can walk...I'll let you walk up the big hill."
I began wondering why I brought her...the soccer coach.
"Come on! Quicker!"
"This is my pace!" I huffed. "At least I'm still moving!"
She let me walk when we got to the stop sign and that was my biggest mistake. Stopping.
She kept checking her watch.
"If we want to make your goal, we're going to have to start running again."
And we did, off and on.
"I'd like to throw up," I said.
"Good! I've done my job!" she crowed. "If one of my soccer girls doesn't throw up, I don't feel like I've done my job."
"You are a horrible person. I'm not talking to you for the rest of the night." ...
... "At what point do we need a medic?"
We made it to the corner I'd designated in my head as the one we'd start running at again, and we took off. My hands and arms were swollen and I felt like someone was poking me with a million needles.
She finished a minute before I did, and when I crossed the finish line, the clock read 41:33.
I know why I brought her. Couldn't have made it without her nagging.
"You made your goal," she smiled.
"Actually three," I replied. "One, to even DO a 5k, to do it in less than 45 minutes, and I ran the farthest I've ever ran in years."
Our work was done.
We went home to bed.
Post race: infrared body wrap Saturday, combined with two naps and a heating pad. All that after running just a 5k, you might ask. Well, I demanded a lot from this LD body and it needs special treatment to recover. So yesterday was resting.
And this morning I ran a mile.