Saturday, December 21, 2013

Comfort Zone

Call me crazy. In October, I stepped out of my comfort zone and ran two marathons, two weeks apart from each other! Well, l need to be honest...they were both marathon relays.

By random chance, I ventured into the team sport arena of running.  (Rewind to August) Here's the scenario:
I'm bored of running, but know I need to keep moving if I want to maintain the physical gains I've made. So, reluctantly, I log into my account and begin signing up for the Spokane Marathon 10K in October.  As I'm about to confirm my registration, I'm interrupted by a phone call.  It's Turtle Girl and she needs one more person for her Spokane Marathon relay team. Seriously!? The same race, the same distance, the same registration website I'm on, but more fun than running a 10K alone...I'm in! And so, with that, my relay team adventures began.

I'm a princess runner. I hate being cold, running in the rain, snow, wind, or running up hills. Yeah, I know...suck it up and go.  Running in the Northwest guarantees I'll need to buck up and deal with all the above.

Spokane Marathon Race morning it was 30 degrees. I had the final leg of our relay which included Doomsday hill. I was nervous because I was the "closer" for a team where I'd never before run with two of my teammates. As a matter of fact, I'd only met them briefly the day before and I knew I wouldn't be able to pick them out of a crowd. I felt pressure to "perform" (from myself) and it was hard to go through my normal race morning routine knowing I would still have to wait at least another three hours to run (after the race begins). Odd. I don't know how to do that, but I was about to learn.

Ready, set, go...Turtle Girl was off.  Our team drives to the first transition point and waits in the warm car for her arrival.  Turtle Girl arrives, Beth takes off, and we head to the next transition and wait. Beth smokes her leg and Andrea is off before she knows it. We go to the final transition point and wait some more. Andrea rounds the bend and I take off. It feels good to finally run. I've been waiting for this since I woke up, six hours ago! I make it up Doomsday hill and power through my leg passing two other relay teams along the way. It feels good. Rarely am I the passer, usually just the passee (I may have made that word up).

Race over, group finisher photo taken, and final relay time of 4:30.  What a relief and blast! Would I ever do it again? Definitely, two weeks later....

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