Everything about the Run Like an Antelope 5k was driven by Kisa. He’s the one who discovered it, learned more about it, and was so moved by it, decided to sign up for it. He read the story out loud and finished with, “I want to run it.” My reaction was cautious although I know it sounded skeptic. “Um. Okay.” It’s not that I was wary of Kisa’s motives or that I questioned what moved him. I got it. I got him. I could see he was 100% committed. My issue wasn’t with him. It was with the timing of the whole thing. Less than two months to train with tons of travel in between then and the race. Not to mention we were already on the road when he found out about it. We couldn’t even start training then and there. By my calculations we would have barely five short weeks in order to go from zero miles to 3.1.
As predicted we barely trained between 80204 and 04852. Half a dozen good runs and a bunch of physical therapy sessions then our training was put on ice while we traveled once again. If asked, Kisa would tell you that while on vacation we hiked a lot. We did. Plus, our rental
cottage palace was at the top of a steep hill. In order to come home from anywhere we had this monstrous hill to battle our way up. While it was great for the quads I still wasn’t sure we would be in the right frame of physical come race day.
Race day. As the rain threatened and sometimes advanced and we stood around getting colder and colder I asked myself more than a few times why I wasn’t home on the couch with a good cup of coffee and an even better book. Just by looking at Kisa’s eager face I was reminded of the importance of the day and the negative thoughts were soon forgotten when we started to run and more and more runners passed us. I forgot about wanting to be home with caffeine and Coleridge. I found myself gritting a competitive spirit between my teeth and tamping down on the urge to surge ahead. A man running in jeans infuriated my sense of ability; ignoring him was next to impossible, but I was determined to stay by Kisa’s side. Stride for stride I would not leave him. Mile by mile we alternated running and walking (more of the former than the latter) and I couldn’t help being impressed by how little we slowed to a walk.
Kisa had said all along that he goal was to just finish. He didn’t expect to run the whole thing. His ambition was firmly grounded in reality. What I didn’t anticipate was his own competitiveness emerging after I had finally swallowed mine. By mile three a girl in purple passed us slowly. Kisa admitted under his breath he had been keeping pace with her the entire time. Now he wanted to beat her. With one tenth of a mile to go he was determined to sprint it out. Really? I eyed a steep incline but Kisa was already surging ahead. Really. We glided by Miss Purple then Miss Sporty Headband and Mr. ShuffleLot as well. Kisa grinned. He had wanted to beat them, too. Who knew?
In the end our time didn’t matter to anyone but ourselves. We weren’t awarded medals, not even an honorable mention. But, we had a great time. We’ll be back next year. And, in a strange twist of fate, remember that coffee I had been dreaming about before the race? At the after party we won a new coffee maker and four boxes of k-cups. I got my coffee after all.
[I’m saving the old coffee maker for my good friend Belise. Maybe her next paramour can use it. ;)]