For years I’ve obsessed the week before a race. I’ve planned each day’s training, monitored my food and fluid intake, got extra sleep and had last minute pangs of unexplained muscle soreness. Don’t know if this has helped me race faster, sometimes it’s worked and then there was last week…
My best friend Jude and her husband Tony flew into San Francisco on Tuesday for 6 days on their way to the Caribbean. We’ve been friends since we were 17 and have shared multiple careers, marriages, children (hers), highs and lows. I was excited to share our home and my new country.
When planning our get together I realized that Reno’s annual Mothers Day race fell on the day after their departure. I’ve run it every year since arriving in Reno in 2006. “Moms on the Run” raises money for women who have cancer and helps out with rent, groceries and other living expenses.
After days of touring the Napa Valley, drinking lots of delicious red wine, eating plenty of yummy food, late nights chatting and not much running, Sunday morning arrived. I woke wishing I hadn’t entered the 10k. Why hadn’t I chosen the 5k? Perhaps I would just stay in bed. Thank goodness for Larry’s coffee!
Soon I was on the start line basking in the sunshine with thousands of women, men and children, runners and walkers. Colorful costumes abounded, mostly in shades of pink. There were even some “Avatar” pink runners. After a prayer for women with cancer and the national anthem we were away.
All my anxiety disappeared when I started running. I got into a rhythm and rolled along. By the turnaround point I was surprisingly in the lead. As I headed home the encouragement from other runners buoyed me along. “Way to go”, “First Woman”, “Go Girl!” Their cheers gave me energy. As it was a fun run I had to dodge around the 5k walkers and strollers in the last mile and half but again everyone was very supportive.
Hitting the finish line in 41.50 exceeded all my expectations. Now I’m wondering if the laid back approach and perhaps a few glasses of red wine might be my new training regime!
Carmel & Jude