I ran... and when I say ran, I mean I very slowly walked... my first race Rocky Mountain Soap Company Womens Walk/Run in May of 2014.
I signed up earnestly like most people on the first of the new year as an incentive to get my rear end in gear. To be more "active" and exercise and be healthy. Ten kilometres is a long way to walk (I was actually picturing myself doing a little bit of jogging...I know...) when you're not prepared. I was sure that the RMSC race was going to be my target and I was going to be the beacon of health and do exercise things for the first time ever. Best part was was signing up with three friends, and we were going to do this as a team, and we going to walk the heck of this race (with a little light jogging) and look at me running on a mountain.
Well, instead of being an inspiration to myself and actually preparing for the race and showing myself I could do this properly and prepare; I did nothing. I did manage to convince myself that tomorrow I will... start to prep. Tomorrow.
I don't know why I lied to myself so much and believed it, I should know myself better than that.
I've never been a runner or general lover of exercise. Signing up for a race wasn't going to make me an athlete in 5 months.
Fast forward 5 months later....
Athletic status: urmmmm....
Preparedness for the race: bought a new jacket and unearthed unused sneakers from my closet that I purchased, who knows when, in the hopes of one day using them.
Weeks leading up to the race, my band of merry women came up with a theme for our team. We were "Team Sloth." We had bright orange t-shirts that team mate Sarah made up. We rented a condo from Air BNB (thanks Karina) organised rides from Edmonton and delegated who was bringing food (Dawn was in charge of food, she's the only real grownup out of the four of us) and that's it. That sums up my training schedule in a nutshell. I was in charge of bringing wine for the condo and snacks for the car. Check and check.
The morning of the race, we made our way to the Nordic centre through beautiful Canmore, we were first in line for the power stretch. We danced and stretched our little hearts out! THIS was something I was good at! Finally!
Then ... GO...
Off we went, off into the mountains on our 10Km journey. Racing with hundreds of other women through the vast beauty of the mountains.
The *real runners* (the women that actually run, and were actually prepared for this) ran and we stayed out of their way. Which is the great thing about the Rocky Mountain Soap Company Womens Walk/Run. it was for everyone. The half marathon women ran, and they ran ran and it was incredible (and also embarrassing when they finished their half marathon before I finished my 10Km walk), and the slow pokes, otherwise known as "Team Sloth," meandered through the mountains, took pictures with deer and laughed through the entire race.
We finished second last, and probably would've come last if we let Sarah go to the bathroom one last time, and we were proud. We just walked 10km, and we had team t-shirts and we were tired. At the 8km point I had had enough and was cursing my lack of athletic prowess.
Really, the race for me wasn't about athletics, well, except for the actual 10km walk. I obviously wasn't there in my journey for physical fitness, but I had made strides, giant 10km strides in doing something for myself and doing it with friends. Taking the time out away from my kids, being with friends and having a good laugh was a good step in the right direction. I've done it now. I've walked that 10km in a mountain, and I have the t-shirt to prove it.
About Nicola Doherty:
Nicola came to the run from Edmonton representing with Dawn, Lori and Sarah in Team Sloth. She's the mama to three and avid "that sounds like a good idea" participant! She writes for Entrepreneur Mom Now Edmonton, and works for Rocky Mountain Soap Company as the Social Media Coordinator.