On Saturday, Septemtber 15th I completed my second 50-mile race. I went into the race pretty excited. My first ultra-distance event was a little over a year ago and that 50-miler, the entire experience of it from start to finish was incredible. So naturally, having had a great time, I jumped at the opportunity to do another. I got to the start line feeling really good and healthy and when it was time to go, I eagerly dashed away from the start line to begin my journey.
The first two hours of the race, when the sun wasn’t completely up were my favorite part of the day – hands down. But the middle of the race was a totally different story. After about 16 miles in I knew I had my work cut out for me. It was a struggle-fest much earlier and for much longer than I had remembered during my first race. Particularly in the middle. I just felt “off.” And after nearly two weeks of resting and reflection I realize that had just as much to do with being a little under-trained as it did with my mind that day.
After the race, I posted the following on Dailymile (the site where I log my workouts):
(Ashley had encouraged me to post this here, so I’m posting it now, with a little more commentary)
I didn’t want to think much about the race and the above was all I could muster. I felt like I had a bad attitude about it and I wasn’t really happy with that either. It took a few days and some words of encouragement for me to realize that while it may have been difficult, I had achieved something great. And without even really realizing it at first, I had taken something positive from the day. A lot of positives, in fact!
I learned that often, things don’t go as we expect. And that we aren’t always as prepared for something as we’d like. I learned that there is value in moving forward despite the challenges that lie ahead. I was reminded that there is just plain value in continuing to move because things tend to work themselves out as long as you’re doing something. I remembered that once in a while the voices telling us to quit can be loud, but that there are also a million reasons to keep going.
I met Jill, Ashley’s mom, a few days after the race and I was reminded why I wanted to be a part of this team. I remembered why I keep going, even when it gets tough. It’s for Jill and others with MS who can’t run. It is so much bigger than me or than one race.
One of my favorite Native American sayings is, “If we don’t turn around we just may get where we’re going.”
I joined the Our Athletes team in this spirit and it is one I tend to abide by in my everyday life.
Join me in living out this message and supporting MS research, won’t you?
- by shayladvorak
- posted at 10:01 AM
- September 26, 2012