So, If you haven't figured it out yet, this is part 5 (day 4) of a seven part (6 day) set of entries.
*****I woke up early on the morning of Day 4 with some tummy troubles but that wasn't going to stop me. This, afterall was not only the 3rd day of the Center of the Nation series and miles 39.3-52.4 of my 6 day running adventure, but it was also Boston Day. One of the fellow runners in the series had run The Boston Marathon and was active in fundraising for the Boston One Fund. This generous man asked that everyone wear Boston related gear to the WY race, and in exchange, he would donate $5 for each to the One Fund. So of course I was looking forward to Boston Day, and of course Brina and I wore our Boston Strong Shirts. It was too cold for just our tanks so early in the morning, but we quickly shed our jackets. And it was worth every moment of being chilly to join together to remember the tragedy at Boston.
Day 4 brought us to Colony Wyoming, AKA "The Bentonite Capital of the World." Colony is so small that county officials and the US Census Bureau don't even bother to keep track of the town's population. From what I understand the only thing that really exists in Colony Wyoming is Bentonite, the factory, spectacular sunrises and views, and wonderful people like Janet and Thorval Jansen who graciously opened their land up for us to run (and play) on.
I don't want anyone to think that I had given up, because that most certainly was not the case, but I know my body. I know what I am capable of. And you know, if there is one thing that I have realized is that the fast times aren't what make you an impressive athlete. Yes, having an amazing half marathon time of 1 hour and 45 minutes makes you an impressive endurance runner. But meeting all of these people out there caused a shift in my thinking.
|Without her permission, I didn't want to post her photo.|
Because despite the gorgeous course, the spectacular sunrise, the perfect running surface of shale, the amazing people I was enjoying my time with... my body was failing me. My stomach issues quickly spiraled out of control and I spent enough time in a port-o-potty to last me a lifetime. Then my heel was bothering me and I felt myself altering my gait a bit, which quickly had some blisters re-emerging. Between the bathroom breaks and the emergency blister surgery, I was a hot mess and wound up sitting out for a combined total of 40 minutes of the race.
And I didn't beat myself up over the time. Because I had spent the morning realizing that the term "endurance athlete" doesn't always have to do with a fast time. Sometimes it is about time in general.
And what a time it was!