Happy Independence Day! Today I ran to celebrate my own independence as well as that of our nation.
I have found a new sense of independence, free from the oppressive nature of poor health, laziness, self-depreciation and obesity. Now, I am still not where I want to be physically, but I have come SUCH a long way. I joined Instagram early this year (@Jet_Sweets) and I have been using it mostly to highlight my running, and to connect with different people outside of Facebook (which I really don’t use a whole lot anymore). I have posted some comparison photos, and in doing so, I came to the realization a couple of months ago that I have lost OVER 50 POUNDS!
Folks, I struggled for a LONG time with my personal issues. I continued to use excuses, illness kept creeping in, depression kept me from supporting myself and from acknowledging the support Chris was trying to offer. I isolated myself within my relationship. I caused added stress to his life and made him feel inadequate when he couldn’t help me. For years, I was inadvertently testing the strength of my marriage and there were times where I put my relationship at risk. I honestly wouldn’t have been able to blame him if he moved on with his life – not with where I was at that time, both physically and emotionally.
Thankfully, I have an amazing partner who never gave up. Things just changed this year. Not just in my running, not just in my health and weight loss, but in ME. I am NOT who I was 4 years ago, 3 years ago… even last year! I have fought hard to get to where I am, and I am NOT going back. So, yes – I celebrate the independence of our nation, but even more so, every day, I celebrate myself.
Running this 10K was great. It was my first return to the Calico Racing events since 2010. Joyce is a great race organizer and I’ve had fun in the past volunteering at her events. I knew this race would be a good one, I just knew it when I woke up.
We got up nice and early for the event, having prepped all our gear the night before – as most of us do. I was nervous about the 10K distance after the attempt at one the previous month, but I felt optimistic, enthusiastic. I had a couple of photos taken by the event photographer and then waited for the start. There were not a whole lot of participants, but the energy was still great.
The race took place out near Lake Las Vegas and used recreational trails which are fully closed to vehicular traffic. The course was great, weather wasn’t too hot just yet, and the people were fantastic. The course was an out and back with a 5K option as well. We ended up crossing under Lake Mead Parkway through the established tunnels, went up the (moderate) hill, crossed under through another tunnel and made the turn around right at the entrance to the Lake Las Vegas community. I had stepped on a nail a few days before this race and I was worried that would really keep me from finishing the whole distance. I tried to forget about it as much as possible and just enjoy the event. The nail had gone through my sandal and punctured my foot, right in the middle – where I felt every step I took for the previous days leading up to the race. I was thankful when I came to the realization that my foot was fine – but then my lower back was having some pain.
I managed to keep my walk/run alternations going and felt pretty good during the run. I am still far from fast, but simply focus on doing the best I can, pushing myself to do better, and also trying to remember to be smart enough to listen to my body when it really counts (not when it’s just trying to be lazy). I finished the race feeling strong and accomplished. It really is a good feeling, one I’ve been looking forward to for a long time.
Race stats: Finish time: 1:26:33* Avg Pace: 13:56