I recently made one of the best decisions of my running career. It may be a simple one, but at the same time one I'm ashamed to admit that took a bit longer than it should have to pull the trigger.
This year I decided to do a local turkey trot in Walnut Creek (Ca). It's a small 5k/10k that benefits local education. Which is great. I've done it once in the past and enjoyed it. I've only run a couple 10ks so it isn't a distance I typically do. That last time I ran a 10k I pushed myself to a 51 min. finish, which at the time was challenging. I'm trained for long distances, not fast paces over smaller distances.
The decision was this:
- Register for the 10k and see if my recent increase in pace allows me to push myself even further for a faster time.
- Walk the 5k with my mom who has been walking a lot over the past year and is getting excited about improving her health/pace.
Seems like an obvious choice, especially on Thanksgiving. But being competitive with myself and always trying to improve my time over any distance made me think, shamefully, longer than I should have.
I thought about it for a couple days, already knowing which was the right decision to make. But that little devil on my shoulder kept whispering: "Your mom won't mind if you run the 10k." Which is true, Moms rule that way.
Although the devil kept whispering, I didn't let that little red bastard get the better of my judgement and registered my mom and myself to walk the 5k. And I couldn't have been happier.
We made our way to the start line decked out in our running gear, my mom wearing her race day tech shirt, which I think may be her first. We started at the back to avoid becoming jammed in a bottleneck on the course and allowed the speedy folks to start ahead of us. We weaved through other walkers, strollers, dogs and even these guys in turkey capes:
My mom has become pretty fast at the walk. I definitely felt the burn in my calves. Funny, right? But I'm built for running, not speed walking. Different muscles are emphasized.
We walked and talked and grabbed a couple photos together. Laughed at some folks taking short cuts over the sidewalks, easily shaving .1 off the course. Disqualified. We talked about running watches and how my mom could start incorporating some running into her 3 mile walks. I was pretty proud. Yep, son was watching his mom start to get the race bug. This was her third 5k and now that she is seeing the differences in events, starting to discover what she likes and doesn't like.
It was a great way to start Thanksgiving Day and I'm glad that I decided to spend some extra time with my mom. She has done so much for me and I was happy to experience the event with her. I would make that decision 10 out of the next 10 times. Oh ya, and since this was my first 5k, I set a PR!
Thanks mom for a wonderful day and kicking my butt on the 5k. You go girl!