This is Rachael and I looking fresh before our run. Look matching shirts. She completed her first half marathon ever and is such an inspiration to hard work and perseverance to me.
Jodi H. and Kelsey C. who were also such powers of walk/running on this beautiful morning for a 10K.
I was in bed by 10pm. I was well hydrated and ready for an early morning start. I can’t remember the last time I woke to an alarm connected to a “beep” “beep” “beep”. My alarms are typically the pitter-patter of little feet, or the soft whispers asking, “is it breakfast time yet?” Even with an alarm going off David had to give me a nudge to get me out of bed. I gave myself time to eat breakfast, have my coffee, and drink more water. I was not anxious or nervous for what I thought would be a 10K walk. I had resolved that I was not going to trick my unfit body into half marathon condition in three months. A 10K walk would be no different than that of a days hike out with my family, which I can do and have done, and this would be no easy task on an early Saturday morning.
Weeks before this event I had a dear sweet gal come over to my house on many occasions and do some run/walking with me. Together we talked about how God was working on the seams of our lives. Working our how He was transforming us with exercising and fitness in different ways. I loved hearing her story and together we became new friends. Rachael’s goal was to complete her first half marathon ever. She was an encouragement to me when I could not make it up the steep half-mile hill at the front end of our run. She willingly slowed her pace down to keep in step with me. Bless her today. I then linked up with another young gal for race day that wanted to just walk the 10K.
Turns out that Kelsey and I had met months before, so it did not take us long to start chatting away. Within the first steps of our walk we set our goals. “Let’s work to pass the lady on the left with the white hat.” So together we picked up our pace and then our walk turned into a jog and we passed her. Once we passed we did a low high five and smiled at each other. Next, “ lets pass that couple with the matching blue shirts, they look pretty tough with that clip they are moving but we can do it.” So we stepped up our pace once again and realized that a jog would be needed to pass them. And we did and once again, we low fived. Trying not to be too conspicuous with our small high five victories. And then it was him we chose. We had to choose him. He would be our nemesis for the rest of the race and beyond.
Let’s choose him, “Mr. Bright Lime Green Shoes, he is way up there, but we can take him easily.” I think we were feeling pretty confident with our three passes and quick high fives. As soon as we chose ‘him” he took off in a sprint. Darn it all, just our luck. We could barely keep him in sight through the crowd. As we rounded the corner. We knew our only hope was to take advantage of the down slope and run and we did. We ran, ran hard and ran past Mr. Bright Lime Green Shoes. Whoopee! That called for a serious no bones about it high five. We were two high fivin’ girls. Slowing down and catching our breath. Oh yes we are good. We are that good. As many more blocks got under our feet a woman on the sidelines had her camera out and yells….”I want to take a picture of you, I love your bright shoes.” What? There he was on Kelsey’s left passing her…Mr. Bright Lime Green Shoes. We were too tired to care but we were not going to let him get the best of this race.
The funny thing about Kelsey and I having teamed up was that our run was about the goals and motives behind our running. It did not dawn on me until later this evening that I laughed out loud. This was supposed to be my walk. I am walking in a 10K people. This is what I have been telling people all along a walk not a run. But Kelsey says let’s run and we run. Pretty soon I am saying let’s run and we run.
Our next stretch of running was our longest run. This was the “I want to impress run.” Yes I think we can both admit vanity on this one. Kelsey had her camera ready to snap a picture of Jodi S., the gal who put this event together for the Solid Rock ladies. We saw a bunch of hardcore lean mean runners running in and assumed it was the half marathoners on a turn coming in, so we hoped to see Jodi S. in the crowd and get an action shot of her. We knew what she was wearing and the crowd was thin, so it would be easy to spot her. Kelsey says, we do not want to be walking when we se her so we run again. And keep running, and no Jodi S, and we keep running, and no Jodi S. We pass the “4” mile sigh and realize we feel AWESOME for the entire running we are doing. There is still no sign of Jodi S. Only to realize it is the 10K runners coming in and the “4” mile sigh we saw was on the other side of the road for the way back in. Back to walking.
We then see Jodi H., another one of our own and come alongside her. More running and walking. The kind of running that starts like this. Quiet, no talking and someone picks up the pace with running. I join in. Then more walking, then someone says lets run to the next sign, more running and I run. I have realized at this point that this is not the walk I was walking today. Instead I am being challenged because I want to run to that sign just as much as the next person. I realize that the past few months of my run walk conditioning as conditioned me exactly for today’s race. God knew exactly what I could do because I AM NOT MY OWN. My walk run training the past three months was a challenge for me. I kept to it. It did not yield a half marathon. How could it. You can’t take 30 extra pound on a middle age body and stress your body with long runs. My orthopedic told me that. God knows me. He knew what I could do. He sent me not one but two angels. One angel named Rachael to train with and one angel named Kelsey to do the race with.
I ran over the finish line. As Kelsey and I stood taking in some water I looked to my left and started laughing. Very quietly I said “Kelsey look over your left shoulder and look down.” She did and it was Mr. Bright Lime Green Shoes. Standing just a few feet from us. We both laughed. It was very funny and silly at the same time. The day ended with lots of cheers, smiles and hugs for each runner that came in.
Later I got a text from Rachael. She asked what Mr. Bright Lime Green Shoes looked like. I told her. She apparently was tracking him in Costco. End of story. To God be the Glory