So we ran. We passed a lot of people. We gave high fives to spectators. We screamed, “WOOooOOoo!”. We had fun.
I didn’t realize it until after the race, but I didn’t have any thoughts of uncertainty creep in about my knee. It never once reminded me of its existence. Honestly, the only uncertainty I had was whether or not I should skip the last porta potty or not, could I squeeze tight till the finish? I made it, just fyi.
The course ran through the last 4 miles of the half and full marathon course, which was reminiscent for me. I remembered doing the half marathon last year, I remembered how I was feeling at each point, I remembered walking at mile 9, stopping at that porta potty, walking again over here, I remembered it being so hot and humid that I wanted to jump into Lake Monona. But this year was completely different, the weather cooperated, I was running with my husband, and I’m so damn strong now (fast too, TeeHee).
Well, I was feeling strong until we reached the last demon hill before the finish. I began cursing. Outloud. “I’m dieing. I’m dieing. WHO PUT THIS HILL HERE? I’m going to vomit. Efffffff“. People were looking. When I finally got to what looked like was the top, it didn’t stop, there was more incline. “EFfffff”.
Then this girl who I was playing “I pass you, you pass me” with throughout the entire race caught up and was at my side. Oh no you dit-n’t. I sped up. She sped up. People are watching, she will not get ahead of me. I went full out balls to the wall sprint, she tried to do the same, but she vanished out of my peripheral vision behind me and I crossed the finish.
“What the hell was that?” My husband demanded at the finish, who by the way finished one second ahead of me.
“That girl, didn’t you see her? She tried to beat me, I wasn’t having any of it”
“I thought you said you had nothing left at the top of that hill?”
“Didn’t you see that girl?”
“No! I was hauling ass trying to keep up with you!”
“Oh. Well, I beat that girl”
Sure, I “beat” that girl, but I can’t help but think it wasn’t really her that I was after. I think I sprinted out some of my inner demons that are lingering from runner’s knee. I
ran raced 6.55 miles without kttape, pain-free, and worry-free. Good bye runner’s knee demons, don’t let the door hit you on the way out!
And here’s my 6.55 miles by the numbers: Click!