Another Thanksgiving is over which means I’ve run my fourth Turkey Trot race! I’ve gone from running a 5K to running 5 miles in four years. This year was almost harder than my first race though…
How can I say that? I’m over a 100 pounds lighter than my first race and I’ve run farther than five miles on regular workouts and even ran my first 10K this past Spring! Well, sometimes things don’t go the way you plan, but if there is one important thing I’ve learned in my gastric sleeve journey is that you have to remember that sometimes trying is more important than succeeding.
Now this isn’t to say that I don’t consider the 2015 Turkey Trot a success. My running mantra is and always will be “You just have to finish!” So I did finish the race and with a respectable time, but it wasn’t the time I wanted. My first two miles went really well and I ran at a great pace and I ran more than I walked. Yeah me!
Then the pain started. Sigh. At first I thought the pins from my racing bib were sticking me in the stomach. I even checked! No, it was abdominal muscle pain. I was so frustrated and confused. I’ve run longer distances the past few months so I wasn’t sure why my muscles were strained.
I slowed down and even with the pain, I kept going. I was scared that something was really wrong. After two c-sections, a vertical abdominal hernia repair and a tummy tuck, my poor abdomen has been through Hell. I must admit I go to the edge of crazy when I worry about my body. “I’m going to need surgery AGAIN!” I screamed in my head. I watched racers in turkey costumes run past me and I knew I was doomed to have my first unfinished race. I would be found clutching my adorable turkey headband in the middle of a trail in Golden Gate Park by my worried, but mostly embarrassed son who had finished two hours earlier. What a way to go…
Finally, I realize that if I could still walk, I must be OK. I shook off my drama queen attitude and straighten my turkey headband. “All I have to do is finish” was my battle cry! I managed to run and walk the next three miles and finish about the same time as I did last year. My abdomen would not defeat me! Well, actually it was more of my “Debbie Downer” attitude that would have been my downfall.
Yes, I was disappointed and frustrated, but I finished! And to have my friend N. waiting for me at the finish line as she has done for the past four years, I couldn’t help but smile. And then I found my son, who naturally finished way ahead of me, I was happy once again.
My abdominal muscles were sore the rest of the day, but I recovered with a bit of rest and pain relievers. And the knowledge that I kept true to one my weight loss slogan of “You just have to finish!” made me happier than a piece of pumpkin pie. Really, it’s true!