Im proud of me because its a milestone each year. Plus Im accumulating a nice array of race t-shirts!
That makes me even more determined to prove that being a type 3, like myself also known as full time pancreas in training, otherwise known by my formal title Apprentice Pancreas, 1st year of training, can be likened to running.
I went out with a strategy today.
Firstly I dressed appropriately.
If I wear anything uncomfortable for the run I simply cannot run. Runners - check. Double socks - check. 3/4 running pants - check. Complete support Lorna Jane bra top - check. Dry weave singlet top - check. Sunglasses and hat - check. Race number pinned to front of shirt - check. Car key pinned to bra - check. In case of emergency person written on back of race number incase I make an ass of myself and trip/fall and need help, (Danger Dads mobile phone number -which Im sure he wont answer anyway because he will be sleeping on the couch at home !) - Check. Pre race fuel - Coffee (omg yes, its a problem) Red apple - Check!
The first 1km was about finding my pace. Find a good rythym that works. Jostle through the crowd for a clear path. (I hate the bottleneck at the start!) Get my foot fall right and my arm pumps relaxed but strong, with purpose. Get oxygen on board. Watch out for potholes in the road. Eye someone up ahead and attempt to (how the heck do you spell it?) manouver? behind them ( into the slipstream). lol. sorry i suck at that word. You do know what I mean though.
The second kilometer is a funny one. Rhythm is good and stride is good. Body check, yup it all feels good. Oh wait can you hear that? Its my hamstrings screaming from yesterdays body balance class haha. No, all-in-all this 32 soon -to-be 33 year old body aint doing too badly! If I was a racehorse they would let me live :)
The course is interesting, it winds through the city, past our beautiful river and up and down hills through our city Botanic Gardens. Some pot holes and puddles in the path - gotta watch out for those!
Alot of people start falling away, walking, or dropping pace and the path continues to clear up so I can stretch out my legs a bit more. Up ahead I spot a lady I recognise (but unfortunately its a bridge she burned) so I happily gathered up my wits and my gluteous maximus and powered past her. Thats about as vengeful as I get.
But it made me smile nonetheless to cross the finish line well before her.
Passing a drink station, I enter the third kilometer. Oddly theres men dressed in womens clothing handing out the cups as we run by! A slight distraction.
Now officially being over half way is a mental game. I decided I wanted to power through to the end. Im talking elbow other runners (oops, sorry) because the team runners spread themselves out horizontally like a row of paper dolls, dolls that were virtually coming to a standstill.... it had to be done folks. And I did apologise!
I basically used what was in my tank for the final two kilometers. You know how when you feel good everything fits- its like turning the key, opening the door and seeing a welcome friend?
Heres comes the worst hill, back over the river, up a steep pedestrian bridge. Half way up this bridge is a coffee station taunting me. STOP...come drink my caffeinated goodness! (yes I have a problem, thinking about coffee halfway through a race).
Its a hot autumn morning and sweat begins to form all over even though its only 7am. My knee begins to niggle. Yeah, Im looking towards the finish line now. I want it done. I want to see the big blue arches and check my race time.
(Now think diabetes metaphorically).
I really use the down hills and appreciate them greatly. I use alot of power when the hills resist my momentum. I set goals as I went along. I talked to myself about the journey. I congratulated myself when I did well, when I was strong. I pulled back when I felt exhausted. I used someone elses pace when I was fumbling to find my own. I rode in others slip streams. I shared a joke with other runners as we ran. I elbowed people out of the way when I needed to. I was prepared, I had the right equipment. I was motivated even when there was no crowd cheering, no recognition or measurable success. I wasnt hard on myself when people passed me but I wasnt arrogant when I passed others (except abovementioned bridge-burner). I looked out for potholes, looked amused at distractions but kept plugging away, my eye on the prize.
Im in this diabetes gig for the long hall.