Saturday, August 4, 2012

My First Race!

It's been an incredible 2 weeks since I made the decision to enter the Run for Wounded Warriors 5k (3 miles) race.  Even though Dr. Lenke advised I should never jog, I participated as a walker.  My daily walking routine is 5 miles (8k) but I break it up into 1.5 mile chunks throughout the day.  Last week I started walking 3 miles nonstop for a few days to prepare for today's big race.

My day started at 4:20a with the sound of pouring rain.  Hmm, what a way to start my racing journey.  I tried to go back to sleep until 5:30a, but I was too excited and couldn't sleep.  Jeremy snapped this pic of me at 5a.
Fortunately, the rain completely stopped by the time we arrived at the venue.  We lined up toward the back of the pack for the start of the race.  Jeremy and Lizzie let me set the pace for our little team (Team Bionica!) and I kept telling myself, "Slow and steady... be the tortoise." 

It was a great course with cool, cloudy weather.  Lizzie was eager to run so she broke ahead of us and ran ahead.  Coming into the 2 mile mark I started picking up a little speed and passed some people.  Lizzie made my day when I crossed the finish line and I heard her cheering for me!  This by the way, was my first race in my entire life!  That's all about to change.
Next steps?  I plan to walk in several more 5k races leading up to my new big goal: walk the Hope & Possibility 8k Race in NYC Central Park June 2013.  I discovered an incredible group Achilles Track Club which encourages disabled athletes to participate in mainstream running events.  I never thought of myself disabled (or an athlete for that matter), but apparently I fall under that umbrella and am now a member of the Achilles Club.  Achilles says that the term disability runs the gamut of wounded veterans, multiple sclerosis, blindness, recovering from surgery, diabetes, cancer patients and survivors, etc.

I'm also 9 months postop and here is the latest pic.
Once I'm 12 months postop, I'll create a collage of each month's postop pix to see a side-by-side comparison.

*Update: I had to share this silly pic Jeremy took of me after a glass of post-race wine.  Tried to cross my eyes, but...

It's been an incredible journey!  Praise God!

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