My first race since the half marathon in February. A 5K definitely did not seem as difficult as the half; however, it was much harder (and slower) than my usual undoubtedly.
The one cold day in the forecast, the wind had a cutting chill. Otherwise, the race had the making of perfect conditions. Moderate temperatures, flat terrain. Everything that should have comprised a cake walk.
Not so much. I woke up sick and cranky for no real reason (yay pregnancy!), and I just could not shake it. I just did not feel like myself, which is pretty standard lately.
When the race started, I was feeling pretty good. I set myself at a comfortable, relatively slow but above wogging pace. I watched the bodies in green steadily pass me and listened to the crowd awaiting the following parade hollering from the sidewalk. I focused on forgetting the nausea and the fact that I had to piss and just went with it, even forgetting the wind as my body heat climbed.
Then in the second mile, my body faltered. The nausea coiled into a ball in my throat, drying out my mouth. My legs felt packed with lead. When the cold wind wasn’t in my face, I could feel my body heat radiating. It just hurt to run.
It came in patches. I felt like utter hell; then I felt a burst of ok. I knew my pace was plummeting, but I tried to concentrate on just my form, just running/jogging/wogging the whole distance.
That nagging annoyance returned. I told myself that I would not worry about pace and distance during my pregnancy, yet I cannot stop myself from turning on myself when both fall short of what I was capable of merely a month ago. I was trained up for a half marathon less than two months ago, yet here I was, struggling and puffing through a flat and cold 5K. It irked me my core.
There should not have been able to be enough puking in the world to derail me so quickly.
I tried to just tell myself to shut the fuck up and keep going. I tried to breathe through the nausea and ignore the fatigue. It shouldn’t have been this hard, so I wasn’t going to stop.
I finished slower than I usually do but at least within my goal. I dry heaved my way through the finishing chute until my body temperature dropped and I could circle back to finish with Trisha, mere moments behind me.
I know I am so frustrated because running became such an exquisite outlet for me, and now, in a definite time of need, it is not serving the same purpose. I don’t get the high; I don’t get the release; I don’t get balancing endorphins. I’m not sure why, but I miss it so much that I just keep trying.
And I plan to just keep trying as long as I can.