“Keep going…. you’re the first older person to finish!” Sweet words to hear as I huffed and puffed my way towards the end of the 5km.
Obviously meant to encourage me, these sweet words spurred me on to the finishing line with a bit more gusto! I don’t consider myself old but when I looked around at the handful of finishers, I did indeed notice that I was older than all of the others, by a good ten years at least. Instead of taking offence at these comments, I revelled in being the first over a certain age to finish the local Fun 5.
I told my children the good news, I shared it on Facebook, then at work a few days later I reran the whole race with my much younger work colleagues – in fact I told anyone who’d listen! Now I’m telling you as well 🙂
Did I mention that I was proud of my efforts? You see I’ve not been running very long and am very easily pleased when I do something like this. I like the fact that my training runs and walks have paid off and I can run – I’m actually really surprised!
Our town is very small and the Fun 5 attracted over 100 people of all ages and fitness levels. Many walked, ran, pushed prams, walked their dogs, talked with friends and were out to enjoy the beautiful autumn day. We need these sorts of events to get people outside, to be more active, to mix with others and to push themselves out of their comfort zone. The local gym were the organisers and it was also a fundraiser for a group of high school students and their leaders who have been training since last September to walk the Kokoda Track in Papua New Guinea in the next few days. They walked with their full packs on and chatted to everyone about their impending trip of a lifetime. There were a few runners who were very serious and ran the whole way, very fast. It was 5km down the hill, around the park and then back up the hill – I ran when I could and walked in between.
The fact that I’d had a sore back earlier in the week, (which made me wonder if I’d even be able to walk, let alone run), made my time slower that I would have liked but on the whole I’m very happy with myself. Officially I was credited to being the first in the Open category 🙂
Thanks to the sponsor and photographer Kris Daley for this photo of me powering back up the hill. My daughters will not be surprised that I have a smile on my face, as I’m well known for my Debbie smile whenever a camera is pointed anywhere in my direction. (Not everyone has a smile named after them!)
I have a long way to go in the running stakes but I’m out there giving it a go! I’d love to hear from you if you are a runner or can relate to my story in some way.