Sunday, June 13, 2010

Accomplished: Alaska Run for Women (Except I Walked)

Boy am I glad I went out and bought a sugar free Red Bull last night. I knew I was going to need it this morning.
I know I've gone on about the sun here in Alaska, but man, I just don't remember it affecting me like this last year. I didn't get to bed until two, and just as I was falling asleep, my roommate finally came home, and was loud until about 6 am, when my alarm went off for the first time because I knew I was going to need additional time in waking up.

I made sure to get some good stretching in, as well as two large glasses of water, and made some eggs with cinnamon chip bread. I ate half of the slice before the walk, and the other half well after the walk was over.

So, I live near where the event was taking place, and decided it'd be convenient for me to walk, and it was. Just not so much walking home. My legs felt like led at that point, and every step jarred my hips, something I usually don't have an issue with. The path was actually part of the route, and so I got to walk the same mile three times today.  It winds underneath two of the busiest roads in Anchorage and deposits you right next to the Sullivan Arena. Once I reached there, I went to where I was told to meet up: at the port-a-potties near the back. I went there, and didn't see a single person from when we decorated shirts on Thursday. Granted, there were only four people at the decorating party, but still. I did my part and showed up on time, where were they?

Finally, the last call for stragglers was called, and the crowd moved through to the parking lot where the walk actually began. There I saw an entire wall of portapotties. Encouraged, i started hanging out near the back, as explained to earlier. But alas, I still couldn't find anyone.

I was in a sea of people. The goal was to have 10,000 women sign up this year. They didn't reach it, but they did get 7100 women registered, which is pretty amazing. I love how active Anchorage's community is. I think the announcer said something about it being the 3rd largest women's only run in the country, but I can't be sure. Either way, it was amazing to see all the different teams, the survivors of Breast Cancer, and all the love that was there.  Being me of course, I brought my headphones and ipod, and turned it up full blast. I occasionally took my earbuds out to hear the bands as we walked by, and I know if I had left them out, eventually someone would have tried to talk to me. But I couldn't. I needed my security blanket to get through this walk.

The walk takes us downtown, then wraps around the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail, before heading back to the arena. At one part of the walk, during mile 3, we go very close indeed to my house, and my legs were killing me at that point, and it took every ounce of strength in me to continue onward. I credit 98% of my willpower to continue onward to this blog and its readers. I didn't want to disappoint you, or  more importantly, explain any potential disappointment in myself. When I finally made it through the pink finish line, I was excited, but I was tired. I was already considering how I was going to get home. I briefly considered calling a cab, but thought that if I'm going to be a Walker today, then I was going to be a BAMF about it and walk home too. All together I walked 7 miles.

Minutes after crossing the finish line, I walk over to the water station and grab a cup. I look over to find the nearest trash, and who should I see, but one of my team members! Yay! Finally! Apparently they hadn't been able to find anyone else either. So we snapped a couple of pictures, and went on our way.

I went home, slowly, talking on the phone with my mother the whole way. There were so many times when I just wanted to sit down, and take a break. I know my body though, and knew if I sat down before I was really ready, I would not get up. I would not be able to, or if I was able to, it was hurt more than it did already.

I took a shower for as long as I could stand to be on my feet, and then crawled into bed. Once in bed, I fell asleep.  I woke up around 5pm, disoriented and in a lot of pain. My right hip and my left knee were just on fire. Finally I considered the day a success. I love the feeling of my body being worn out. Its oddly rewarding.

How did you feel after your first walk/run event?


Happy Fun Pants said... [Reply to comment]

Way to finish the race! I'm so proud of you!

And yes - I remember my first 5K and I was MISERABLE. I walked the whole thing too, but I was so heavy that my hips and lower back hurt a ton.


Ana said... [Reply to comment]

Congratulations!!! What a huge accomplishment for you. :)

Traci said... [Reply to comment]

Great job passing your house and keeping on the path for the race. Great job! My first race was a 10K (6.2 miles). I was surprisingly not too sore at all the next day. I was for sure tired right then. I had been training for it so my body was ready.

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