This morning, I ran my first ever race–5km as part of the Scotiabank Waterfront Marathon series. I was so nervous, I barely slept last night. I didn’t know what to expect and I worried a lot about not leaving the house in time and missing it altogether, or not arriving early enough to take a bio-break first. But it was all fine and I arrived early enough to have to kill time in my corral by doing my stretches and A LOT of jumping up and down to stay warm.
The soundtrack to my first race
Before we even started, I was feeling pretty pumped–although the rain was dripping off of me and I was already soaked to the skin, there’s something crazy inspiring about standing around with hundreds and hundreds of other people waiting to begin a race. But then, just as the horn was about the sound, the new Massari song started streaming through my headphones and I had a huge rush of adrenalin; I believe I screamed and jumped in the air and then we were off!
I don’t have highbrow tastes in dance music, and to me, dance music and running music are the same. My darling hubby made me a run mix so I wouldn’t have to worry about coming upon something slow and demoralizing and not being able to change it easily (some Leonard Cohen has somehow made it onto my longer workout mix; wtf!).
The mix was perfect. I galloped (but only in my mind) to Gangnam Style; I got a little teary-eyed when You and I playing coincided with seeing my husband cheering for me on the sidelines; I understand better now why Titanium is everyone’s favourite song these days–when this one came on, I had to restrain myself from speeding up to a point that I probably couldn’t sustain; one of my favourite classic Lady Gaga songs came on to keep me going at a good clip; and then a newer Lady Gaga got my blood boiling again and I felt tremendously happy; and it all concluded with my favourite workout song of all time (because of the silly but probably NSFW video–my god, the instructor’s ass is so perfect it must constitute a higher truth. Speaking of superlative posteriors, that classic Lady Gaga above might also be NSFW). I think I may have forgotten a song or two here, but these ones I remember pushing me further.
My only musical disappointment was that my latest favourite song, and which I I downloaded just for this race, never came up…But next time!
Why I’m on the verge of happy tears even now, hours after it’s over
If you read my recent post on Haruki Murakami’s running memoir, you’ll know that the likelihood of my ever running a race was close to zero, for so many reasons.
But when I run on my own, I usually don’t run the whole way through–I walk for a minute or two at intervals to rest a little and then I begin running again. Today, I ran the whole way through and didn’t start to get tired until there were about 400 m left; but I kept going. My time was 29:22.7.
When I signed up for this race, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to finish it at all. I thought if I did finish it, I would be lucky to do so in less than 45 minutes. My friends, I’m almost weeping because I did it at all, but because I don’t know what I’m capable of. I have more in me than I knew. I’m my own inspirational story from Buzzfeed!!!!! Yay!!!!
What’s next? I keep going. Head up, smiling. Grateful.