Today marks the day I completed my longest run in my half marathon training. 10 miles before 9:00 a.m. CRAZY!! I must be dedicated seeing that I bid my bed farewell at 4:50 this morning and began to prepare myself for a 10 miler in Shelby Forest. iPod...check, energy gels...check, jacket (cause it's very chilly)...check, hydration water...check...forget it, you get the idea. I ate two oat and peanut granola bars on the way and drank a Sunkist, two of my favorite snacks. I turned up the KLOVE on the radio and meditated on the words to each song that played. My God, my inspiration. I was reminded more than once this morning that He should always be my inspiration. I have said before that when I run, I use this time to talk to God. I know I don't have to run to talk to Him, but I have found this to be a good time for me. Whatever brings us closer to Him, right?
As I ran through Shelby Forest and tried NOT to focus on the miles I had to run, I chose to focus more on my surroundings. The sun rose just before we started the 10 miler, and the scenery was absolutely beautiful. Trees changing colors and deep forest all around...it was actually kinda easy to keep my mind off my feet hitting the pavement with the scenery. After 3 miles, I started thinking, "Man, that's a 5K. 2 more 5K's to go.(Plus one mile.) I can do this, I can do this." And then I started praying again. You see, I think running requires almost as much mental preparation as it does physical preparation. Praying helps me with the mental part. Somehow, I don't remember the miles between 3 and 6. Mile 6 is wher they passed out the GU, the energy gels. I had brought some different energy gels, but I took one of the GU's and tore it open. I squeezed out a bit, and let me say, they don't make these things to taste good. I made myself take another shot of it, and then tossed the rest. Mile 7 and then mile 8. I almost choked, not due to the drink of water from my water bottle or energy gel I was eating, but from the tears almost cried as I realized I was almost finished and that I had actually run this far and this long. No crying, I can't spare the energy for it. :)
Mile 9 was a doozy! We had mastered a few hills, but the hill on mile 9 takes the cake! I turned to my friend behind me and shouted, "O, M, G!" (Oh, my goodness!!) That's all I could say at that moment. It was no hill, it was a WALL! I, along with everyone else I saw around me, walked this "WALL". Once I got to the top, I caught my breath and began running again. About 3/4 mile left to go!
I glanced at the clock, crossed the finish, and turned in my chip. I went straight for the Gatorade and water. I asked my friend, Anna, for the time and she said it was 9:00. I knew that if I hurried, I could make it back to town for worship service at my church. I told Anna good-bye, found my jacket that I had tossed about halfway through the race, and got out of "the woods". I was determined to put as much effort into making it to church that I had out into running those miles. After all, God allowed me to run those miles. I made it to the choir room just before they were ready to go out to the sanctuary. Whew!
So, 10 miler...check.
My time: 1:48:47
I did it!:-)
God is good!