Sunday, November 22, 2009


I was happy with four, really I was. That there's my problem, you see. I started out this year saying "Hell yeah, I'm gonna run five 5ks this year!" The first one sucked, but was exciting. The second, third and especially the fourth, really sucked and weren't quite as exciting as that first 5k high. I had the fifth one scheduled and then (miracle of miracles) I had to go to my Grandparents' 50th Anniversary that day and couldn't go to the race.

And you know what, besides a little disappointment, I was perfectly okay with not reaching my goal of five 5ks. I had made my peace with it, especially after the Cheetah Run absolutely kicked my ass.

Sure, there was a little nagging voice in my head saying "look, you need to do another one. You said you'd do five, and you need to do five." but he was so easily squashed by the memories of the suckiness of the previous ones that I really wasn't worried about it.

Then The BFF (bless her little, pea-picking heart) sent me an email at work one day a couple weeks ago.

"Any interest in doing this 5k with me?"
"Yes, actually." (Where the HELL did that come from?! That couldn't have been me!)

And then the dread set in. My thought process went something like this: "Oh my God, I have to do this again? What the hell am I thinking? Although, it would be nice to actually accomplish my goal. Yeah, but dude, they suck! I don't want to do this. I don't want to do this. I don't want to do this."

And most of the way to the course, I repeated that mantra. "I don't want to do this. I don't want to do this. I don't want to do this."

But, I did.

Here's The BFF and I with the Mayor of Santaland! Who knew that (1) there was a Santaland, and (2) it had a mayor who frequented 5ks? (ps...does he not look like a Willy Wonka character?! lol)

Yeah, it's all fun and games before the torture starts.

The 5k was through a local drive-through holiday lights display. Most of the first mile was a nice flat loop out and back, and then it went two times up through the loop where the lights display was. OH. MY. GOD. the hills. I will have nightmares about those hills. One hill that went up for ever and ever and ever. Then down a steep hill, then up a smaller hill, then down a steep hill, then up another freaking hill that went on for ever and ever and ever again, then down a steep hill.

I have never been so close to giving up in all my life. After the third hill on that loop, I really thought that I was going to finish the first lap around and give up. I very, very seriously considered stopping when I rounded the corner and saw the first hill looming in front of me. And the two-mile marker midway up was just a slap in the face. I couldn't do it. I couldn't face doing those hills again and going through that hell. It was cold. I couldn't feel my hands, I couldn't breathe, and when I did, it was icy daggers in my chest. I wasn't even two miles in yet, and had three huge, crazy-ass hills standing in my way.

And I didn't want to do the damn 5k in the first place.

Luc,kily, as I rounded that corner and saw that hill, I also caught a glimpse of two of my co-workers just a couple steps infront of me. They had started the race as walkers. As walkers, and they had passed me. Which isn't really that scandalous, since I'm used to getting passed by walkers when I do 5ks. But they were my co-workers. One, I didn't want to look bad infront of them, since they knew I started as a runner, and two, I was so focused on catching up with them that I temporarily forgot about my determination to give up, I turned the corner and started up those damn hills one last time.

And I finished that damn race. I finished my FIFTH 5k of 2009. As much as I didn't want to, I accomplished the goal I set back in May. I have actually completely completed a goal. Other than my wedding, I am almost 100% positive that I can't say that about anything else in my life.

I didn't want to, but I did, and I'm glad.


Lyndsey said...

Anna!!! I am so proud of you! I know you've really struggled this year (I have too!) but I'm consistently impressed by how you keep trudging forward even after you stumble. FIVE 5ks... you rock :)

Anonymous said...

Of course you did.


Because you're a fighter.

TriciaNae said...

You are awesome!! I'm so proud. I'm setting a goal to do a 10k (CRAZYNESS) in February...even if I have to crawl it. I think I should add a 5k or two to the mix next year as well!

Nyght said...

Hey, I think I saw you there! Those hills WERE nuts, weren't they? The first time was bad enough but when we looped around again I just wanted to go home. The lights were worth it, though. Good for you for not quitting!