Monday, April 14, 2008
On Sunday, the morning after the women's event at OCC, I ran a half marathon on Whidbey Island with my friend, Lori. I'm really not sure why I picked this particular race, given it's proximity to AWAKE. I was absolutely exhausted the night before. I didn't have any words left to speak. I packed up my race gear and literally passed out. Lori picked me up at 5:30 in the morning and we headed to Whidbey Island.
We knew that the course on Whidbey Island was hilly. So, for 16 weeks, we trained on hills in our neighborhood. Nothing we did prepared us for the reality of the hills on race day. Here's a recap of some of my thoughts during the race...
Mile 1: "This is a really big hill. Oh crap, if this is how the race begins....."
Mile 2: "Ok, only 11 more to go. Wow, that's not comforting."
Mile 3-7 : "Ah, a downhill. This isn't so bad, I'm getting in a groove here. Good thing we trained so much. I'm awesome."
Mile 8: "Ouch. Ouch, Ouch. My hips......"
Mile 9: "Seriously, this has to be the last big hill. Make it to 10 and then you can sit down and have the aid car pick you up."
Mile 10: "Ouch, blisters. Ouch hips, Ouch back. OK, that 65 year old woman is kicking my butt."
Mile 11: "I think I can, I think I can....
Mile 12: "This was the worst idea I ever had....I am an insane person with masochistic tendencies."
Then, at 12.5 miles, my friend Lori appeared out of nowhere. She had already crossed the finish line, and was herself exhausted and in pain. She ran back into the race to run in with me. When I saw her, I started to cry. She started cheering for me while running by my side. "Come on, Jodie! You can do it! You are almost there! I'm so proud of you! Look at your time, you're doing great!"
It was the kick I needed. I picked up the pace and finished my last quarter mile strong. When I had nothing left, when the well was dry, Lori offered me the gift of friendship. She supplied the energy I needed to finish.My thoughts changed to, "I'm doing this. I'm really doing this. Thank you, God!"
Friendship holds us up when we can't stand. It changes our perspective and gives us fuel to press on.
Lori and I can barely walk today. UGHHHHH!