Saturday, September 03, 2011

Prevail

I'd just run 4.7 miles out of 6.2. I was giving the race 100% of my effort. But I knew there was a hill coming. It was the hill I had run down to start the race and the return trip was certainly going to be difficult. Still, I put my head down and pushed forward.

I saw some lights. It was an intersection that looked just like the place where the race began. The start of the race, the end of the hill. I couldn't see my race watch, this was a night race, so I had no idea how long I'd been running back up the hill.

I approached a street light, it was bright enough to illuminate my watch so I could see the numbers. I looked down expecting to see 6.0 miles and mentally prepared myself for the last 0.2 miles of downhill sprinting towards the finish line.

My watch said 5.5 miles.

Not 6.0.

It was crushing. Pain tightened in my left side. Stitches, they call them side stitches. It's like a cramp, but not really. They do hurt though. I was slightly demoralized knowing I had another half mile to go up the hill.

Another street light came. 5.72 miles on the watch. I had a half mile to go and I wanted to beat my previous time. It was at this point I knew I was going to need some help.

I unlocked my iPod nano. I skipped directly to this song on the playlist. I then lost myself in a sea of effort, pain, drive, and focus. If you've ever been to that place in your mind, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't, I simply can't explain it. I crossed the finish line at 46:00 even, propelled by the crushing sounds coming through my headphones.

Everyone ends up dead. It's just a matter of when.

3 comments:

mortal_one said...

Yea! You finished. Was this your first 5K? Keep it up!

Nsidestrate said...

46 is pretty impressive 10k time. I'm jealous.

Otis said...

Mortal One's comment, while surely innocent, actually made me laugh aloud.