There is a festival every year in the area where I work. It is a huge deal with a giant televised parade, tons of events, crafts, a carnival . . . the entire town shuts down.
Somehow, I’ve never experienced this event, so when my work sent out memos about joining in the festivities, I signed up – for everything.
When I was in college, I started running and I ran a 5K. I ran on and off after that and did a scavenger hunt 5K, but that was about it. The running has really tapered off this last year, but for some reason when work sent out an email about the festival 10K, I thought, “I should totally do that!” Now, a 10K is 6.2 miles, and quite frankly, my sedentary self has a hard time meeting my 5,000 steps-a-day Fitbit challenge, but I signed up for the 10K. I also conned a buddy into signing up as well.
My thought process went something along the lines of, “Well, I can run about 2.5 now, and I’ve got 6 weeks, so I’ll train and bump it up and be good-to-go by the end of April.”
However, none of that happened. I ran maybe 4 times and went into the race pretty much cold. Thankfully, I’ve been doing the 21 Day Fix and race day was Day 21, so I had been doing strength training and cardio along with an evening walk.
I don’t think my buddy stuck with his training too much either, so there we were, bright and early on a cold, damp, rainy day with 6.2 miles stretched out before us and only determination to get us by, and we had a blast.
We had never run with each other before, so I assumed that we would start together, separate during the run, and meet up afterwards to compare times, but he stuck with me the whole way which was good because I almost gave up in the last mile.
Now, as if running 6.2 miles wasn’t enough for one day, I also invited my folks up to walk around the vendors/food in the park and signed up to be on my company’s float in the parade. (That’s called overkill.)
Tired from the race, I walked all over the park with my folks and due to the weather and the point in the weekend; there wasn’t too much to do so we went out for lunch. Here is where things started to get stressful. My town is full of one-way streets, all of which were blocked off due to the parade. When I suggested lunch, I meant in town; my father assumed I would want to go to a little diner I like on the edge of town. We didn’t realize where he was taking us until we were almost there. We ate in a hurry and started back into town to the float-loading point.
There was no getting there. Every turn was blocked and no one could give us directions. I started to panic, and finally my fellow just had my parents stop the car and let me out so that I could walk. Except by that time I was so late, I ran. I had my mother’s GPS and my cellphone, and my poor legs, weary from the race, ran another half mile. I literally vaulted over a small child and arrived to the loading point two minutes before the float arrived.
The weather didn’t improve at all throughout the day, and it was cold riding on the float, but it was so much fun! My cheeks hurt from smiling so long. My cousin snapped this picture and her son was in one of the bands in the parade with us.
After the parade, the fellow and I went to a potluck for his fraternity then over to friends to play some games. They graciously made me a cup of tea, and I promptly passed out on their couch. Straight fell out. I can’t remember the last time I was so tired.
I think I am going to try to keep running especially in race settings as they make running so much fun! I hope to run a half marathon in October. I also want to do a dirty girl run and a color run; those are usually 5Ks so I can handle that. A goal of mine is to someday run the Disney Princess Half Marathon, because really, who doesn’t want an excuse to wear cute outfits and a tiara?