Before the Sun Rises

June 30

This morning I did something I haven’t done in over twenty years.  I woke up before the sun…to run!  Nine others showed up to beat the heat at 6 in the morning.  The temperature was already in the 70’s and the sun had barely shown her face.  I was excited to know that I was going to push past my longest run to date and do four miles.  The excitement of this run was turned around when I discovered that this run was NOT going to be four miles.  The complete run was going to be eight miles.  I wasn’t sure how I had gotten the information SO WRONG.  I decided that since I got out of my bed in the dark and I was already there, I’d do the best I could.  As we started our trek on the course I had never been on, I discovered something else.  Not only was I going to attempt to push myself to a greater limit; I’d be doing so running across bridges and up and down hills AND stairs.  I wondered what I had gotten myself into.

During the intervals, it seemed that every time I felt I couldn’t do any more, the two people in front of me would yell, “walk”.  I wanted to hug them every time they said it, but my legs couldn’t move any faster to catch them.  When I’d make it to a downhill portion, I was excited; until I realized for each hill I went down I’d also have to come back up.  At four miles, i was happy for two reasons.  1. I had gone a further distance than all of my previous runs. 2. This was halfway and I wasn’t dead.

On the way back, there were signs indicating the distance to the finish line.  At 1.5 miles I wanted to cry as I knew the only way back to the end was to keep going.  At 1 mile to the end I cussed in every language as the 1 mile marker was at the bottom of the most ridiculous hill.  After about 15 strides up, my legs felt like jello and I couldn’t run one more step.  I walked briskly to the top…in pain.  My legs hurt on the outside and my pride hurt on the inside because I just couldn’t do it.  When I saw the .50 mile marker, I was excited to be near the end.  But I was also nervous as i saw signs indicating that the stairs were near.  I felt confident that the stairs would be easier to conquer than the monster stairs.  I imagined myself doing a Rocky victory dance at the top.  Just before I put my foot on the bottom step, I heard the call…”RUN”!  I was certain that they deliberately waited to make this call when they knew I was at the bottom.  Shame on those girls,  They knew this was my first time.  As I began my climb up, a passerby coming down cheered me on.  She said, “Keep it moving.  The top is closer than you think!”  I was grateful for this friendly stranger.  But halfway to the top….I WAS DONE!  I walked up the last flights of stairs and thanked God for getting me there.

As hard as this run was physically and emotionally, I was glad that I went.  8.02 miles….I DID IT!

Share My Thoughts
Category: Pen & Pavement