We converged at City Hall at 0800 hours Thanksgiving morning. There was an army of people already there and in an hours time there would be even more.
Cat, Amstaff Mom and myself were going to run the 8 mile Turkey Trot – a first for all three of us. We were to meet at the flag poles out front of City Hall and when I did finally find Cat she was with another man. She introduced him as her friend, we’ll call him Bob, and so I shook Bob’s hand hard and stared into his eyes letting him know that I was the bigger man. Once I finished squeezing his hand I dropped down and did a quick fifty pushups and fifty situps – all with lots of grunting noises. Then I got up and put my arm around Cat to make sure that Bob knew she belonged with me.
Amstaff Mom arrived a bit later and we made our way to the front of the line so we could start the 8 mile run. I was more than a little nervous. The last time I had run more than 8 miles I was 23 and 90 pounds lighter!
The race started and Cat and Amstaff Mom left me within the first mile. I had to pace myself so I could at least finish the race. My athletic ability lies in consumption of calories, not running and so I was content with plodding out a 12 minute mile pace.
After about 5 miles I was feeling really dehyrdated, but also a bit elated that I hadn’t stopped to walk. I weigh 330 pounds and to be able to walk for 5 miles would be a feat for some of similar girth, but I had RAN IT! Go Me! I didn’t even stop when they handed us glasses of water, I just slowed and splashed the refreshing H20 into my mouth and all over my body. I trudged on like the tortoise that I was.
Somewhere between 5 and 7 miles I started thinking about picking up the empty packets of energy goo and licking the remaining contents. I longed for some gatorade, or a power bar – anything to help me finish this daunting task.
I looked for the 6 mile marker and never saw it. I checked my phone and saw that I had been running for about 20 minutes since I had seen the 5 mile marker and I couldn’t believe how long it was taking me to run this 6th mile! Ugh! Then I came over a hill and I saw the 7 mile marker! YES!!! I know that if I had topped that hill and the 7 had been a 6 I would have probably started walking. Seeing the 7 I was encouraged and I pushed on like the little engine that could. I think I can, I think I can…
At about 7.5 miles I heard Cat yelling “Go Eddie!” I felt both happy and sad at the same time. Happy to see her and sad that I was running so slow and pathetically. She jogged over effortlessly and continued to run with me till the end of the race. We finished, Thank GOD, and I never walked the entire 8 miles! I don’t recall my time but I know it was around an hour and 42 minutes.
The three of us quickly found some water and then looked for bananas. We never did find any bananas, but we did find some vanilla DanActive yogurt drinks that were AWESOME! I consumed 4 of them and 4 bottles of water in record time. I hugged Cat and Amstaff Mom and told them that I would see them tomorrow and then I raced to my parents house for Thanksgiving.
When I got in my truck I noticed for the first time that I had salt encrusted all over my face. Add a little soap and I would have had a sea salt scrub for my face. It was gross. I wiped at it and it burned, but I was still on a “completion high” and nothing was going to break my stride, nothing was going to slow me down.
It was a great day. I was very proud of my girl and very proud of Amstaff Mom too – she beat me as well and all of us beat our goal times.
Can’t wait to hear about your Turkey Day as well!