Have you ever run a race where you weren't sure how it would go? Isn't that every race though? Yeah, I guess you could say that you should go into races hoping for the best, but anticipating anything. HA! Sunday was my first ever 10K race and I was running it with my friend Danielle.
She is the friend that completed the Rock n' Roll 1/2 marathon in June and had gone through running classes to train for it. Now since then she's continued taking various training classes and ran another race, but in the past I had always been a bit faster than her and in some small way I felt good about that. Not that I was better than her in anyway, hell she's run a half marathon and I haven't, but I kinda prided myself for being a bit faster.
So on Sunday she was our time keeper and my pacer, since the last race she ran was a 10K (her first) and she ran about an 11:37 mile. Now mind you that is a minute a mile above my last race pace, so I knew this would be good to help me edge myself into a faster pace. So we were running the race and at about the 2 mile marker she said that we were running a 10:38 mile. WHOA! That's a fast pace for me...and I was feeling it. Not in my legs, remarkably, but in my lungs. So we kept going and when we got to the second lap around the lake (two laps made a 10K), I couldn't keep up the pace and I fell back.
I felt defeated.
She kept going on her merry way, at the same pace we had been going at. It took all my will not to cry. I wanted to be faster, I wanted to be better than her at something in this running world we are a part of. I felt like my speed was all that I had...and I'd lost it.
Then at that moment I remembered a mantra that I had for a Momentum Monday that I loved and reminded myself to use when I needed to keep fighting on. That mantra helped me to shake off my disappointment and remember that this race isn't about me against anyone else. It's about me against me. Doing MY best and running MY race. From that point on all I had going on in my head was this mantra, over and over again:This race and what I endured emotionally has only lit a fire under me. I want more, I need more. I want to run longer and improve my time. I've got another 10K next month and I want to CRUSH my time. Maybe this was the incentive I needed, that kick in the rear to get into gear. I don't know, but now I can't stop, and I won't stop.