My Virtual 5K (I didn't vomit...)

At 11:20 AM on Saturday, I set out to run the Wee Little Virtual 5K. I started out at a good pace, but pretty quickly things went south.

Stupidly, I had played badminton the night before. I was hoping for just a light sweat, nothing too intense, but my competitive nature makes it hard for me to just play for fun. I pushed a bit too hard, and eventually I lunged for drop shot at the net and felt my left knee twinge. Not too bad, just a moment of pain, but I didn't take the hint - I finished the game. And about 5 more after that.

The next morning, it felt a bit tight but I was ready to get moving, so I decided that I didn't need any ibuprofen. I was ok for the first mile or so, but shortly after that I started getting a little jolt of pain behind my kneecap with every stride. I figured it would lessen if I slacked the pace a bit, so I eased up and it did feel a little better.

Thinking I was in the clear, I began to check my watch against landmarks on the course and try to guess my finish time. At that point, a 35:00 was still possible, and I was hopeful.

It was about the halfway point that the wind started to pick up. It was actually quite pleasant in terms of temperature, but the cooling breeze also carried with it death, in the form of pollen.

My allergies only last about a month each summer, but they are acute and brutal. On several occasions, friends and loved ones who have witnessed me having a full blown allergy attack have offered to take me to the emergency room. My eyes turn red, tear up, and eventually one of them usually swells shut. I get hives on my tongue and the roof of my mouth, and my throat starts to swell up, making it hard to breathe. My sinuses start to pound, and in one instance, I got a nose bleed from both nostrils simultaneously... Oh yeah, it's a good time, let me tell ya.

Of course, that's only if I go outside without any meds on board. On Saturday, I had taken a Zyrtec at about 8:45 AM, so I only had a minor attack. By the two mile mark I was sneezing, sniffling, my eyes were burning, and my throat felt like someone stubbed out a cigar in it. I realized that my dreams of a sub 35:00 were fast evaporating, so I decided to gut it out and just try to finish. I struggled on home, clocking in at 36:10.

It wasn't exactly the glorious run I had planned. Oddly enough, that run was last weekend, before whatever I'm allergic to bloomed. I am hoping for a rainy night before my next race, the Firecracker 5K on the 4th of July. (Rain helps cut the pollen in the air.)

I'd like to thank Wee Little Me for sponsoring this great event - I'm not sure I would have finished Couch to 5K without this goal to shoot for.

I'd also like to thank Amy from the Runner's Lounge Community for sending all the participants bracelets that say, "I Am A Runner." I was still feeling kind of bummed about my time today when I sat down to write this race report, but the mail arrived while I was working on it, and there in amongst the bills and credit card offers was my bracelet, like a completion medal. I'm wearing it now, and it's ridiculous how much I'm enjoying it - you'd think I won Boston or something...

The real reason I feel this way is that a running program gives you a concrete feeling of accomplishment - something sorely lacking in our world today.

Whatever it was that made you hate running in your past, let it go - I let go of dozens of bad coaches and mean drill sergeants and skinny assholes who laughed at my pudgy ass to get myself back into running shoes, and I'm glad I did. Check the beginner programs out there; I did Couch to 5K, but there are dozens on the web. Give yourself a chance to accomplish something.


weelittleme said...

WOW what a great race report. What a great reflection on running and what it means and aren't those bracelets too cool!
Ice that knee and enjoy the bliss of having done it, pollen and all.

Kitzzy said...

Awesome race report! You beat me by about 2 minutes!

I keep trying to tell my boyfriend that he really doesn't hate running, but he just won't listen. I can't wait for my bracelet to arrive so I can sport it around with pride! :)

Anonymously Lost said...

Good job HSBP I knew you could do it.

Also that was a great speed still a little better than before and think not everyone would have stuck it out like you did. You are a trooper.

I am happy with you :)

Lillian said...

Congratulation on doing the Virtual 5K. You're a runner.

WNG said...

I'm not telling you how much you beat me by because it's embarassing (over ten minutes). So here's what is NOT a good idea: scheduling a family visit/music festival/5k all on the same weekend. I got three hours of sleep on Friday, ran (limped/jogged) on Saturday morning and spent the rest of the weekend barely able to move...although that could have been the vodka.
BUT I'm pretty proud of myself for actually getting up and meeting my group at the park instead of rolling over and sleeping like I wanted to.
We didn't get involved with weelittleme, we just stole the date:-), but maybe I'll get everyone to write something up that I can post!

His Sinfulness said...

Thanks for your support - I am very proud of our little community and how hard we've all worked!

If a tubby guy like me can run a 5k, ANYone can - and enjoy it too! I hope we get to see many more race reports; maybe even one from kitzzy's boyfriend. ;)

WNG, running on little sleep and a hangover is EPIC. You're a hero in my book! (But you knew that already... :) )

Kitzzy said...

Ha ha! My boyfriend does 5Ks with me, but he is not much of a blogger. He doesn't even train, just goes out there on race day and outruns me by like 10 minutes. But that gap is slowly closing :D He'll have to start training soon if he doesn't want to get beat by a girl :) He is also not a morning person AT ALL, so that makes it hard to get up to run in the mornings. He may hate THAT more than the running and is just projecting. LOL

Modig_Bjorn said...

Congrats man! I'm sure, with your level of commitment you will have increasingly better results in the future.

Huzzah for HSBP!

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