Have I mentioned there’s a chance I may die on October 9, 2011? Cause yeah. It could definitely happen. And I’d have nobody to blame but myself.
It all started in early July when my cousin told me that her team for the Army Ten Miler was short one and asked if I was interested. My response, once I finally stopped laughing, was to explain just how far 10 miles was out of the realm of possibility for me. Running ten consecutive miles, for fun no less, was beyond my ability to fathom. I’m not quite sure what happened, but somehow a week later I was actually considering it. I’m thinking some sort of spell was involved. Or perhaps alcohol.
In theory, it was a good idea. It would help me shave a few pounds, get me in great shape for soccer, and make the Warrior Dash I’m doing on October 15 a breeze. Plus it’s a very well-known and popular race, so much so that it’s almost impossible to get into, and here I was being given a free ride.
Here’s the problem: I really don’t like running. I just don’t get it, and three years of cross country in high school did little to convince me of its enjoyment potential. Why this thought didn’t factor more into my decision to sign up to run TEN MILES I will never know.
I started out optimistic. I did some research online, found a training guide for novice 10 mile runners, and planned out a whole schedule of training. It lasted two days. So here I am, two and a half weeks before race day, and I have done almost no running. Every time I get up early and get on the treadmill I think to myself WHY????? (It would be a longer thought but I don’t have those at 6:30 a.m.).
The Best Friend, who knows a lot about running and a lot more about my warped existence, has a theory for how the race will go. “You’ll probably finish,” she says, “only because you’re you (and by that she means so competitive it’s almost a sickness)…but then you may die.” I should probably mention she is at this moment getting a PhD in Neurobiology from Stanford, so she has this ability to say stuff like that in a very authoritative, listen-to-me-I’m-the-expert tone. And then laugh heartily at my poor decision making skills.
Finally today my deepening feeling of dread caused me to take action. This morning I got up and actually put a few good miles in. I’m not going to say how many, because I think there would be some judgment and I’d like to hang on to my sense of accomplishment for a little while longer.
Then after work I went to a running store, as advised by The Former Expatriate, and bought real running shoes. They measured my gait on a treadmill and everything. I can honestly say it was the first time in my life that appearance wasn’t the deciding factor in my sports shoe selection. Although there was a pink pair that would have had to feel like I was running on a marshmallow-lined cloud for me to have picked it. I’m pretty happy with my final selection, but then again I should probably withhold judgment until I see just how large the blisters are after the inaugural run:
At least if I die I’ll be wearing really cool shoes.