With a lime green outfit, I ran out of the door guzzling my protein smoothie. Saint Patrick’s day brought corned beef and beer to the masses that day, but I was headed for Robbie’s version of the “pot of gold”– payback.
A few weeks prior, I convinced Robbie to join me for a two hour zumbathon. Going over salsa and the cha-cha moments before made me realize dancing is not innate in everyone…
By the first water break from shaking it, he told me there would be payback for our next race. Instead of the 10k (which would already be a challenge), we would be running the 10-miler.
We walked to the starting line where the shrill air nipped at our ears and nibbled on our fingertips. The mass (and slightly green) cloud of witnesses shivered in the cold. I didn’t know if I was ready or could even handle the 10 miles… one way to find out! Turning up my music, the gun sounded and we were off.
- Before I knew it, I saw the mile 1 marker and chided to myself how lucky I was to run daily during my California stay; I can do this!
The moment the thought raced through my mind I saw it.
Rio Rancho kicked my butt last year for my first triathlon. The gruesome hills feast on their prey and the weak-willed find themselves giving up.
It was around mile 2 I was hurling insults to the hills.
Mile 6 I was faced with a decision. The 10 miler required me to re-loop the forsaken hills (AGAIN) whereas I could blow past and finish with the 10k group, making a decent time and rest my poor bones.
Of course I couldn’t take the easy way out.
The second loop seemed longer than the first 6 miles and by the time I hobbled to the finish line, Robbie was there to greet me. His smile stretched wide; he had finished long before me.
He hugged me once we crossed the finish line as the electronic noises welcomed my timing chip.
Despite my complaining and obvious discomfort of running 10 miles through hills, I realized how lucky I am. On a day devoted to Irish symbols and good cheer, I stood healthy and happy. Not only am I blessed with a body that I force up hills (sorry), but I also experience epiphanies of joy after putting myself through athletic challenges. My smile got a little bit bigger and despite my knees feeling swollen and upset, I knew peace in that moment.
By the time we got home, I opted for a real pot of post-race gold and made rare steaks with avocado pasta. Settling into my post-race post-meal bliss, he was ready to take on the day.
I took a nap.
While I appreciate the challenge and the character building the 10 miles brought, payback or no payback…
I am the luckiest girl alive!