Ugly crying, and remembering to breathe...
(this photo was at kilometer ~4. Little did I know, I did not 'have this.')
I wasn't nervous. Before my 10km race yesterday, for the Melfort Multi-K. I wasn't nervous at all.
'I've done this so many times, this distance. I've got this. It's no biggie,' I thought.
I should have known.
Around the 7km mark, I lost it. I felt so heavy and drained - physically, emotionally, mentally. I felt as though there were 50 pound weights on my legs, that I could not shake off.
I wanted to cry. But I couldn't cry. Because you know what happens when you start crying WHILE you're exercising? In my experience, you end up hyperventilating and then you're SCREWED. Forget about running any more. And there was no way I wanted to be a medical call in my local race. Hell, no.
I told my sister Adrienne: "I need to walk. I feel like I can't breathe." I could feel myself starting to panic.
She stopped to walk with me, even though she was doing fine. And because she's intuitive, she checked in on me. She said: "Repeat after me: I give myself permission to surrender."
So I repeated it: "I give myself permission to surrender."
I started crying. Like, ugly crying. Thankfully the running crowd had thinned out at that point. I stopped and bent over, in an emotional mess. Another runner came up behind us and all I could think was: "Keep going, don't ask how I'm doing, it's just a cramp...'
I let the heaviness out. You see, it's been a challenging couple of weeks, and months. When so many parts of my life are full, there are other parts that I'm really, really struggling with.
Then we started running again. I felt SO much lighter, and my running pace picked up considerably. This only lasted for a kilometer, but hey! I finished.
It's okay to let yourself crumble. To have a panic attack, even at a time when it's not particularly convenient (grocery store? Why not?).
It's okay to ask for help. To ask someone to walk beside you.
Because there is so much strength in that.
We had provided 'Remember to breathe' decals to the runners, as part of our sponsorship. So when I saw that some runners had put them on the backs of their shirts (like this awesome girl did), as a form of encouragement for the runner behind them? I had to laugh. Because don't you love it when you need to take your own advice? I needed to 'remember to breathe.' I did my best at breathing, from there on out.
Lots of love and sweaty hugs,
Photos by Adrienne Perrot