After talking about preparing for this race for half the life of this blog, it is high time I blogged about the race itself.
The first, best and most exciting news is around 5:00PM the night before the 10K, we made our $3,000 goal for Compassion International’s Child Survival Programs! I think it’s pretty incredible that a fairly small number of active fundraisers could raise so much money in such a short amount of time (and lose so many inches off their waist while doing it!)
That night at our Pre-10K Carb-Loading Pasta Party, we celebrated with two unexpected runners who joined us at the last minute. One was Karen‘s brother-in-law from California and the other was an old friend of mine from high school. Both had been following various team member’s training and fundraising, and it was awesome having them join us for the race!
The day of the 10K was absolutely perfect. It was about 68 degrees at 7:30AM when the race started and there was a break in the humidity. Kristi and I ran the race together, which was so much fun. She really pushed me to pick up my pace. Around Mile 4, I had that “I’m in the ZONE!” feeling. And it lasted until Kristi started to really make me work around Mile 5, and I tragically couldn’t keep up anymore with a mere 0.2 miles to go. YOU WIN, Kristi! And I… well, I ran the whole race, even through the water breaks. My time was 68:39 – a 11:03 pace – not too shabby for my first 10K.
One of the best things about this whole process has been the community support we’ve all received – from our home communities as well as our online communities. I was really motivated to keep training by people who gave money even before I had set foot on a treadmill. And then the day of the race, my sister cheered for me at Mile 2 and Mile 5 with her awesome sign. My friend Amy joined Kristi and I at Mile 4.5 in her electric wheelchair and “ran” with us for almost half a mile. And then Michael, the boys and my friend John who finished the race nine minutes earlier (he *is* in the Air Force) cheered for me at the end.
I’m a graduate of Liberty University and over Christmas read Brown University student Kevin Roose’s book about his “semester abroad” at LU. While not a particularly religious person, he goes through the process of taking on the trappings of Christianity including praying. He talked about how he didn’t really know how to “do” prayer, and would often say the Lord’s Prayer or sort of fumble along. And the interesting thing was that overtime he realized prayer had become to tool to think about someone other than himself.
As a person raised in a Christian household, I was almost ashamed how revolutionary this comment struck me as being. I have a tendency to get bogged down in my own little life, and overtime look more and more inwardly. This has been a good exercise in actively looking out, but it also reminded me we can do the same in acts as simple as a prayer.