But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. - Isaiah 40:31
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Matthew 25 Health/Dental Clinic 5K Race
I really wanted to do this race since I'm a dental hygienist and have treated some of the patients from the Matthew 25 Clinic over the years. The office where I used to work took referrals from the clinic now and then. Plus, I knew Dr. Phillip O'Shaughnessy, in whose memory the race is held.
There was a 10K race that started at 7:30 and a 5K that started at 8:30. For a moment, I'd considered running the 10K but thought better of it and after the way things went today, I was so glad I hadn't chosen to run the 10K. It was one of those "off" days as far as running goes.
Jenna lives not far from Foster Park, where the race was held, so she drove over and was the official photographer and support team for her mom. It was the first time that anyone had ever come to see me run a race and I was so glad she was there.
A few familiar faces were in the large crowd, but that didn't surprise me, given the dental community that I've been a part of for so many years and this being a benefit for the clinic. I ran into Dr. Milliman, who just this week became a dad to a little girl with his wife Kim. I had talked with him and Kim earlier this year, shortly after beginning training. They both run and had offered encouragement to me.
I checked in, got my runner number attached to my shirt and the timing chip put on my shoe, then did some stretches. We lined up at the start and the gun went off. We weren't given much warning, so when it went off, it startled me a bit.
The first five minutes or so of running is always the worst for me. My legs don't want to move. Once I get into a good breathing rhythm, everything else usually falls into place though and then it's almost like I'm on automatic pilot. But today, that just didn't happen.
My legs got adjusted, but my breathing never really did. I noticed I was breathing at a faster rate than normal, maybe because of the humidity.
The first mile went by at the usual rate, but the next two seemed twice as long as they were. I kept looking ahead to see where the runners ahead of me were, and if they'd made a turn yet, but it seemed like we just kept getting further and further away from the start line. I knew we were going to have to run all that way back eventually.
About three-quarters of the way through the race, I came up by a young woman and I heard her say, "Hey!" I looked over and it was Caitlyn, my patient that I'd had a couple of months ago that I also encountered while running in New Haven on the Greenway. She and her sister were running, as well as her mom. We chatted a little bit, then she hung back to wait on her sister while I went on. Shortly after that, I could see the blue pads of the finish line ahead and what a welcome sight!
As I neared it, there was one runner ahead of me, and I decided I would try to beat him to the finish. I did accomplish that and unbeknownst to me, Jenna caught that sequence with the camera.
I was so intent on passing him that I didn't notice the young lady down on her hands and knees a few yards from the finish, vomiting. I saw her later after the race and she was just fine.
I have to say that I understood perfectly why she got sick like that. After I crossed the finish, I had to lie down flat on the ground or I was going to do the same thing. I had started to feel it the last half-mile or so. It only took a minute or two of laying there before the wave of nausea went away.
Jenna and I walked up to the pavilion to await the race results and to find Caitlyn and her family. We found them and we discussed how we thought the race went.
We listened to the awards being given and when they came to Female 50-60 and they announced that I had gotten first in that age group, I was absolutely shocked. I didn't feel like I'd had a good run.
My goal for today was to run it faster than I had before and to do it in under 30:00. I accomplished the first - I ran it 20 seconds faster than I ran the Canal Days 5K - but at 30:15, I went over the 30-minute mark. Oh well. A goal for the next time!