I just did something I’ve never done before. Two 10K races in six days. The first one was practice for the second one. The second one was a bucket-list race I’d always wanted to do. Sounds like a fairly sensible plan.
Until it wasn’t. I got hurt at race #1.
It wasn’t my fault, really. I was trying to do the right thing (avoid another runner). It was in mile five of six-point-two (a lucky thing, as opposed to happening in mile one). My toe caught the grate of the drawbridge and I body-planted on the metal grate. Lacerated both knees, both hands, forehead and nose, plus a nosebleed, plus monumental pain in my biceps and triceps, which took the brunt of the fall (sparing the rest of my body and likely my teeth and eyes) from serious damage.
It was the most serious competition accident I’ve ever had. I bounced up and endorphins raging, finished the race. I couldn’t imagine why no one wanted to look at me at the finish line. Until I found a restroom and took a look at myself. I don’t bleed much, so once cleaned up, it wasn’t that bad. Add a severe toe blister to the list and the overall damage was considerable, but could have been far worse.
Jump ahead to the next race; still bruised, but the cuts have closed. I have a blister bandage on the toe. On line to use the restroom at race #2, I overhear the usual pre-race banter, and a couple of perfectly coiffed and glammed-up gals complaining how they expect their time to be slow today due to the inclusion of a bridge in the route. How their eight-minute mile pace will suffer.
That’s the insulting part of this. All of it, really.
The not-a-hair-out-of-place updos, the totally matched running outfits, flawless skin, jewelry, but worst of all, the fact that you’re upset about your eight-minute mile slowing slightly. Honey, the race route was published when the race was first announced. The bridge was not added as a last-minute surprise. I’m doing this as an old, injured person. I’m pretty sure old enough to be at least your mom. And probably injured enough to think better of this, but not smart enough to do so.
It was a good race. Challenging, but in a sense, fueled by those same endorphins that got me through race #1. I felt decent enough today to work in the yard this morning. And tomorrow will be better, and back to workouts. After all, there’s a triathlon and an ocean swim and a 5K coming up next month.