Yesterday was Leeds 10K. The race that I measure myself against.
I wanted a time. I wanted to be sub one hour. Slow for some perhaps, but fast for me.
It didn’t happen.
I started well. Checking the Garmin, I was on track until about 4K. And then I could see it start to slip away from me.
By the 7K mark, it was over.
Only you keep on running all the same.
One hour, one minute and 53 seconds.
Here’s the thing. You don’t get what you don’t train for. And I hadn’t, not really. No excuses. I could blame the tightly bunched crowd at the start. Or the time for the water stops. Or the bloke in the bloody Minions costume that I nearly tripped over trying to get past (I didn’t by the way, he totally kicked my ass).
But the simple truth is that whilst I ran my heart out, it just wasn’t fast enough.
On the plus side it was a PB. As well as being a whole nine minutes faster than my time for last year.
So now there is only one option. Try again. In four weeks, one more event, one more attempt to meet my target.
If at first you don’t succeed……
In running and in life.
This time last year I was preparing for my first ever big running event. The Leeds 10K. The event was symbolic in my mind. It was proof to myself that I had changed. That I was no longer the girl who couldn’t get off the sofa. That I was no longer oh so overweight.
I am not sure that anyone believed I was going to run this thing. I am not entirely sure that I did.
That I could and I would.
I had one aim. Run it all the way. That was the goal. No walking. No stopping. Just running, no matter how slowly.
With the support of my amazing Personal Trainer who believed in me, with nothing more than simply not wanting to fail all over again, I got to the start line.
And I ran it. All the way. I was at the back of the pack. Somewhere I’m used to being and am happy to be too. I wasn’t fast but I did it.
I thought at the time it was the end of something; the end and the celebration of a weight loss journey. Instead it turned out to be the start of something entirely new. Because as often happens, or so I am told, I crossed that coveted finish line, thinking that it had been both a terrible and wonderful thing. Immediately wondering what to sign up for next.
Way leads on to way.
On Sunday I will run it again. So much has happened to me in this last year. Today, this feels like one more milestone along the path.
I’m a little more casual this time. I’m going for a PB of course. But this time there will be fewer nerves. Less of the unknown. More enjoyment… I hope.
I suspect this will always be the race that I measure myself against. To see how far I have come and just how fast I can run.
And on Sunday, I am going to run my heart out.