All I have to say is w000000t!!! I finished Race for Life and I RAN the WHOLE way! It feels amazing to have started on this in January and to finally have done the race is just so cool! :-)
I didn't know it was possible to have goosebumps for 35 minutes straight, but the start was basically at the front entrance to St. Paul's and the bells were tolling as we crossing the start line. I love that church and there's nothing like knowing that the bells are ringing for you (well and 9,000 of your closest female friends!). The first 1K was so easy, I couldn't even believe it when I saw the sign and 2K was pretty easy, too. I didn't realize how much time you spend weaving in and out around people, particularly because I was at the back of the herd toward the start line. Silly me thought it was at noon, not 11. So we got there just as the first people were starting. No big deal, really, because there were so many people. It was a really, bright, sunny day in London (my weather widget is saying 72F) and I was so glad for wearing my hat and for when we ran between buildings so there was shade. For someone who usually runs at night because it's cooler and there are fewer tourists, it was a bit of a shock. :-) Still! AWESOME! I still can't believe it, even though I knew I was fully capable of the 5K.
I was also amazed when we passed the 3K mark, because I knew it was more than half over. I sort of went, huh? That was quick! I think it was a little harder after that, partially because of the heat and partially because the adrenaline makes you run faster than you would normally. But, I also knew that I was closer to done than I was to the start and that I couldn't give up! It was a funny feeling, realizing that I'd run down some of those streets before, around the Barbican, trying to make sure I wasn't late for the LSATs! I couldn't decide whether to wave or make rude gestures at Ironmonger's Hall, where I've taken the LSATs twice, but didn't do anything in the end. It was cool, though. I could run past and go "neener! I don't need a test to tell me how awesome I am! Look at Joyce run!" And, trust me, I was doing that in my head!
The finish was amazing and a bit of a blur, then I found Libby and had to go back for my medal (which I'm, um, still wearing). Libby, my awesome running buddy was so amazing back when we started in January, kicking my butt out of bed for those morning runs. It's been hard since Kenya, because of illness and stress and school and other commitments, but it meant a lot to have her there supporting me and playing photographer. Libby, you so rock and we'll go running just as soon as we kick these exams in the rear!
So, thank you to Jenni, Welling, Christi & Phil, Ken, Juliana & the Perrys, Patty, Deena, Valerie & Jed, Dave, Bob & Diane, Linda & Harry, Baaaaahar, and Irma (& Barry!) for your donations. And thank you to everyone else who encouraged me, believed I could do it, wished me luck, or just asked how my running was going! You guys mean so much to me and, really, to everyone who had the name(s) of someone they loved on their backs over the 5Ks today. I was thinking of how proud my parents would have been today and every time I saw a head of long, blond hair, I thought of Tricia. So, yay for Races and Relays for Life. Because, as Tricia says, there's always hope.
OOOOH, RIGHT! PHOTOS!:
The I just crossed the finish line w00t! (the other one was taken after I got my medal & stuff)
My back sign. Everyone had one and they were both tough to read and inspirational as heck.
My time. Clearly, I'd been done for a bit...check out that pulse. :-)
The finish line...9,000 women!