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Day 320 - Run for Uganda Update!

>> Sunday, July 25, 2010

I did it! I finished the Run for Uganda on Saturday and am still alive!! ;)

I have to admit, I was pretty nervous beforehand - my "how hard can it be?" mentality pretty much dissipated as the minutes counted down to the start time. Mainly because it was so stinkin' hot Saturday morning - I think it was something like 39 degrees with the humidity? Definitely fitting I guess as we were running for Uganda! I had no grand plans of being fast or anything, I just wanted to keep going and be able to say I didn't stop at all (and by the looks of some of the people running the 10k and the 5k, I'd have had no chance anyway of coming in anywhere close to the front of the pack)!

I put my MP3 player on as Chris counted the seconds down to zero and started the run with a lot of enthusiasm and energy, although sadly I must admit that at the 1k point I was already thinking "oh right, maybe I should have practiced beforehand!" I ran for a little bit more, but then had to stop and walk for a bit. I pretty much kept myself to a run for a song or two / walk for a song or two pattern. When I walked though, I was definitely "power-walking" and not taking a leisurely stroll or anything. I got a little deflated (okay, a lot) when I reached the 2.5k mark (where there was a little tent set-up with water and stuff). I couldn't believe I had only reached 2.5 kilometres! It definitely felt like I had gone a lot further than that, but then I told myself that I at least had passed the halfway point, so now I just had to get to the finish line!

One huge motivating factor for me was seeing the 10k people on their last 5k stretch of the run. Basicially for those running the 10k, you simply turned around at the 5k mark and ran back. They started their race a half hour before ours, so we started passing them as were getting into the meat of our 5k run. Wow - it was so fun and inspiring seeing them trek along and still running strong. Seeing our Uganda team members especially who were doing the 10k was awesome - I cheered for all the 10kers as they passed me, but I have to admit I saved most of my cheering for our team members. Seeing Ashley, Renee, Eddie and Gord go by and seeing how committed they were to finishing the 10k definitely kept me going!!

I finally, after much huffing and puffing, saw the 5K mark approaching. People cheered as I passed the finish line and I clocked in at about 43 minutes (which, yes is a long time to do 5k, but hey - not bad for the first time). I grabbed some water and sat down for a minute or two, and heard Jeff tell someone else that it might be awhile before the shuttle came to to take everyone back to the church (where it all began). I was still kind of amped up, so in a split second decision I decided to get back up and do the other 5k back to the church! I just didn't feel like I was quite "done" yet, so I grabbed a bottle of water and headed back! I ran for a bit, and walked for a bit, but it pretty much took me the same amount of time to go back as it did for the first 5k. Finally crossing the finish line felt awesome - even though every inch of me was covered in sweat and I felt like I couldn't move another muscle, it was definitely worth it!

There's definitely something about running that is a lot of fun, and I can see how runners get addicted to races and marathons - being able to say you actually did it is pretty cool! I think once I give my muscles another day or two to recover, I may just finally take up running! (maybe - I make no promises). The route along the Don Valley Trail was absolutely gorgeous btw. I simply can't believe that in all my time living here, I hadn't experienced it yet! It follows the Don River, and it really is amazing. Very shady in most parts, lots of bridges, and you definitely forget you're in the city! Now that I know what it's like, if I do start running regularly, I think I'll be traversing it's trails more often!

So all in all, a great event, a great run, and a great day (even though I had to get showered and changed right after the run and go to work for a full shift!) Note to self - make sure you get the whole day off next time!


JTCF July 26, 2010 at 2:42 PM  

Congratulations on completing that run. That was no small feat! What an accomplishment! :)

Suzanne July 29, 2010 at 6:09 PM  

Thanks so much!!

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