Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tobacco Road Marathon

I've been avoiding this conversation, one-sided as it is, because I came off the finish line elated, and then I crashed down, and I've spent the last few days pretending to be an emotional yo-yo about all of it.

When I was a kid I was really into yo-yos despite lacking the coordination and discipline to do real tricks. There was a revival of yo-yos about this time, and all these new technological yo-yo advances to make my yo-yo experience more... yo-yo-y. I had one called The Screamer. When you hurled it down to the ground (provided it was on purpose and not in frustration because WALK DAMN YOU I JUST WANT TO WALK THE FREAKING DOG) it made a goddawful screaming/squeaking/begging for mercy noise. My yo-yo emotions weren't like that. There was no screaming. Just some sulking.

I did not PR, is what I was sulking about.

I should have; I'm in hands-down better shape now, and I know a little better what I'm doing, and my long runs were much better/faster, and... basically, it all boils down to the fact that while I was ready-so-ready, so was summertime.

The temperature was definitely over 65*. The Hideous Coursemaster says that when he checked the weather on his smartphone after, it was 90% humidity. The side stitches I battled for a lot of the race concur. I didn't think about it that way at the time, though. See, when I run, I feel like I'm in control of everything. So any side cramping was because I wasn't breathing right, or I was out of shape, or something. I probably slowed down a lot. I still kept the race at negative splits but it was a near thing.

I don't like to blame the weather for my bad race. But it was a factor and I have to allow for that to feel okay about myself.

Also, in actuality, I didn't have a BAD race. I ran 3:53:40, which is sub-4 and that's really my goal for every race. I got 9th in my Age Group (F20-24) and 277th overall.

Most importantly, I beat the guy running in a Ninja Turtle Costume.

Yes, there was a guy running while dressed as a Ninja Turtle. In fact, in this exact costume:
His only modification was to cut the legs into shorts. It pisses me off immeasurably when people run like it's a joke. He was running with the 3:45 pace group the first time I saw him, so I was extremely worried that some asshole dressed as Rafael was going to kick my ass. But I kicked his.

Any time I feel eh about Sunday, I just repeat to myself, "9th in your age group, beat the Ninja Turtle, did not throw up nor want to."

It has to do.

Also, yesterday I went mountain biking for the first time, and holy cow is that fun. Really scary, really hard, and really fun. I started laughing over the first downhill and Bike Dad called back, "What are you laughing at?" I was just laughing at the fun. And the fear. Because, wow, it's basically falling the whole time but not.

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