Sunday, May 2, 2010

Dead last in the 5K *Slightly Updated*

For a while now I've been feeling the strangest sensation.  It started as a bit of curiosity, but slowly has grown into a real desire.  To run.  Not the "away from it all" variety of running, either (although from time to time I feel that, too), but the real life, tie on some shoes and hit the pavement type.  I think it stems from a desire to reconnect to life in a physical way or maybe to reinstate my mind's authority over my matter, but for whatever reason, I've felt drawn to running. What I've been lacking is a catalyst to begin.

So when my husband informed me his work was having a 5K race, asking which kids I thought would like to participate, I answered that it sounded like a fun for the entire family.  "Why don't we all go?"

Famous last words.

After a rather rainy, windy, cold week, Saturday morning was gloriously pleasant.  We managed to rummage up exercise clothes for all eight of us and didn't have a single missing tennis shoe.  We drove over, registered and waited out an hour break.  Although Peter initially volunteered to stay back with the younger two kids, in the end I chickened out and took that job, letting him keep up with the older four.

One minute before the race began, poor Matthew mistook our friend's leg for Peter's and freaked out when the wrong face peered down at him.  So the race began just as my three year old decided being attached to the hip of a parent was safer than taking his chances among the throng of bare adult legs.

But I knew I couldn't carry him, so instead I herded a reluctant, whimpering child for the first several minutes.

At 5 minutes into the race ...  I finally convinced him to run with me a few yards.  But when he fell flat on his face, he decided he'd rather not.  The two minutes I spent comforting him (while trying to keep the five year old in my sights) was the only time I carried either child.

About 10 minutes into the race ... the first runner passed on the other side, already on the home stretch.

At 1 mile into the race ...  we were passed by a 500 pound man (and can I tell you how impressed I was with this guy?  He was going our pace the whole time, but eventually we slowed down.  I'm sure walking 3.5 miles could not be easy, but he was doing it).

At 1 1/4 miles ... we were passed by a woman breast feeding her newborn baby as she walked, her empty hand pushing the stroller .

1.5 miles ... a 75 year old couple shuffled past.

2 miles ... the 9 month pregnant lady waddled by.

Just as we crested 2.5 miles ...  I saw the police car cruising the route.  When he reached us, he turned around.  We were officially bringing up the rear of the pack.

The 3 mile marker was about the last time we had any other participants in our site.

And still we walked.  And walked.  And walked.

We had at least 5 people stop and ask if we were okay, if we needed a lift to the finish line.  I would smile and decline the offer.

The last half mile my two little ones lost their steam, but luckily we could see the stop light that marked the finish line.  (Or at least I hoped so, as I knew both children didn't have much left to give to the effort).

We crossed the finish line 1 hour, 27 minutes after we began.

But they crossed the finish line, my two little ones.

I don't know if they were listening when I encouraged them at the end, telling them they were stronger than they realized, that they were going to make it, but I was listening to my own advice.  Tomorrow I am going to start running.

(If for no other reason than so next time I'll have an excuse to stay with the older kids and let my husband take the younger two).


post signature




P.S.  In case your wondering, my older two boys made it in 44 minutes, the girls and Peter in 48.  Not bad for a family that has been doing little to no physical exertion for the last few months.

*Slight Update*
My husband would like to point out two things:

 1) He did walk back and catch us at the end with some hydration for the kids and to make sure I wasn't piggybacking both of the kids for the whole race. 

2) It is pouring rain today so my dreams of running might be put on hold till tomorrow (unless the rain clears up).

45 comments:

  1. OK, was the breastfeeding thing for real? LOL

    ReplyDelete
  2. I swear to you it was. She had on one of those hooter hider things. I was mega impressed she could do it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. We did a mile fun run once...it was the antithesis of fun. We were the last ones to cross the line, and you'd think it was the Bataan Death March the way our then 10 year old was reacting.

    We tried it again last year. Only the two middle kids did it, and I rode alongside on my bike as they were very soon separated. J ran his heart out and finished 2nd for his age group, N was not quite so into it and finished 11th in hers. :) The oldest that was so horrid when she was 10? Yeah, she was home in bed....

    ReplyDelete
  4. A 500 pound man and a breastfeeder? Unbelievable! You are so incredibly awesome for trying this instead of just strapping both kids into a jogging stroller. Good luck with your running - must be mid-life crisis time for people our age...my exercise class starts at 6am tomorrow.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Congrats to you and especially the 2 little ones.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am more than thoroughly impressed. And if you want a running buddy, I recently fell victim myself to those thoughts of craziness.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I am so proud of you guys! Good liuck with your running. Maybe next year you will overtake tbs breastfeeder and the 500 lb man!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ack! Don't tell me about the breastfeeding mother. I've been using that as my excuse. No bueno.

    Good for you for keeping at it though!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Loved the story! ha ha. I think it is great that you did it as a family. There is something so empowering about crossing a finish line. Good memories. :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. As an added afterthought, I think you should do a 5k for yourself. You can totally do it! No exercise burns calories faster than a good run. And you get great alone time, even if it is only 20 minutes. Good luck! If you go to runnersworld.com and click on the 'smartcoach', you can create a running plan just for you. They also have running plans for beginners. I say find a local 5k in a couple months and sign up. That way, you are committed.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love to run. It relaxes me so much. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  12. @andrea- My kids all wanted to do it at the beginning, but I'm not taking the little ones unless we practice with them beforehand.

    @Claudia- Good luck with the exercise program, I hear your husband is thrilled ;o)

    ReplyDelete
  13. @Dazee I was impressed with them. They sure were tired, though, the rest of the day!

    @Emma Jo You're on! Although my idea of running might be a little slower than yours. 5 times around my block = 5K exactly.

    ReplyDelete
  14. @See Mom Smile- I hope so! It was entertaining to see who makes up the end of a 5K race.

    @Chocolate on My Cranium- I saw them when the race started, it was a BRAND NEW baby, any bigger would get a little hard to walk and feed, I think. So you're excuse is still totally legit.

    ReplyDelete
  15. @Jamie- I know I need to. You're talk about running, along with a few other people, is probably what gave me the idea to begin with. I'll check out that site.

    @Kim- Yeah, I know. You take away my "I think I'm genetically not included to run" excuse. Well, you and Brenda.

    ReplyDelete
  16. My husband would like to point out two things:

    1) He did walk back and catch us at the end with some hydration for the kids and to make sure I wasn't piggybacking both of the kids for the whole race.

    2) It is pouring rain today so my dreams of running might be put on hold till tomorrow (unless the rain clears up).

    ReplyDelete
  17. Wahoo! What a great accomplishment. I love running too, the rush after, the feeling of accomplishment. Nothing else is like it.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Way to go Charlotte and gang! That is a great example to set for the kids, regardless of how old they are! The lessons they learned in even just the one day will last!

    Good luck on your running!

    ReplyDelete
  19. @Allison- until the last couple months I have never had any desire to run, but maybe I'll like it, too.

    @Shawna- I hope so. I figure it's the compilation of many such lessons that make the long term difference.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Way to go, Charlotte and family!! You all did great!!!

    I find 5Ks hard to do as I take a few miles to hit my stride. LOL! Just getting going and the race ends.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Dang! You go Super MOM! I'm so impressed!
    And the breastfeeding mom just killed me. Seriously? How come I wasn't blessed with that talent? It takes two hands, two arms and an army of pillows for me to be able to do it!

    ReplyDelete
  22. That's awesome! I've never taken my three year old to a 5k.

    Running in the rain can be fun! Though I am from washington so maybe I've got some rain in my brain from running in it.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hahaha! That is both funny and awesome at the same time. I loved that your husband clarified at the end.

    ReplyDelete
  24. That is such a good family activity. Remember when we drove our bikes from Sandy to Salt Lake. It is fun to do things like that together as a family.

    ReplyDelete
  25. CONGRATULATIONS! I think it's awesome that you all did that....and cheers to you as the mom that pushed those little ones across the line! I realize you're probably saying don't bring your tiny ones on a 5K, but your story has inspired me to do just that.

    p.s. I cannot wait until the day I can run. Beware that if you start blogging about your success as a runner, I will start posting exceptionally jealous comments. But, only because I want to be you.

    p.p.s. SO COOL THAT YOU DID THIS!!

    ReplyDelete
  26. Charlotte, you are too funny! I love the descriptions of the people who passed you by! You should write comedy!

    But you finished and, yes, the little ones can brag now that they did a 5k!

    ReplyDelete
  27. You did it! You are much braver than me. And the best part, you survived with a great story to tell. And, really, was that woman breastfeeding? Cause that is crazy!!

    ReplyDelete
  28. If it makes you feel better, I would not have beat you, I am horrible in running...horrible!!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hey...me too....enough said.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I know it's not nice to laugh but I giggled and giggled at this post. Run like the wind!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Dead last is better than just dead, which is what I would have been had I tried.

    ReplyDelete
  32. @Nicki- You are part of my inspiration, too!

    @Serene- Super mom, maybe once a month or so I reach that status. I was impressed that she could do that, too. I did offer to help push the stroller, but she was just finishing up.

    ReplyDelete
  33. @Amy- You were just writing about running in the rain the other day. I was impressed, but I think I need to actually be committed and like running before I add the rain!

    @Alyson- He wanted to be clear he didn't just leave me without checking back on us! The older kids helped motivate the younger ones to finish with a sprint.

    ReplyDelete
  34. @Mom- How could I forget? That was one long ride, and I was the oldest. Poor Tami was only what? Five?

    @Karen- one day we will have to run together. If we're ever anywhere near each other, that is.

    @Linda- I thought it was funny, even as they passed us by. Totally impressed with who was running (walking) in the race.

    ReplyDelete
  35. @Christine- She really was. It was really gratifying to finish. I was proud of my boys.

    @Atomic Mom- I'm a horrible runner, too. I look slightly ducky when I try.

    @Brenda- Whatever, I know you run 5K's all the time. Your kids WIN them.

    ReplyDelete
  36. @The Damsel- Then my work here is done!

    @Braden- My husband (who had to run with the older kids instead of walk with the younger ones) felt nearly dead himself!

    ReplyDelete
  37. I walked through the mall and all over target on Friday. How's that for physical?

    Okay... so you totally win. I just wanted to feel less lazy after reading about how amazing you are.

    ReplyDelete
  38. @Steph- That is my normal amount of physical. Usually done with a soft pretzel in my hand.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Every time I've tried to take up running, it kills my knees. My kids like hiking, but I can only inflict that on my knees once or twice a year. Biking, however, has become a favorite of mine. The river trail is only two blocks from my house, and I love a morning ride along the river and back home through the wetlands.

    Here's an idea: you can try those fivefingers shoes and let me know how they are on your knees...and if they make you feel more "ducky".

    Being so close to the river trail, our house is on a race course. Last Saturday we had a half marathon going past...in the sleet. I like watching the runners, except when I'm trying to pull out of my driveway!

    ReplyDelete
  40. lol. what a great experience to give your kids!!

    ReplyDelete
  41. I laughed out loud at the breastfeeding mom passing you by. As Linda said, you have such a gift for writing comedy!

    Good for you and your family for sticking it out till the end. I bet that this tale will become a much-discussed family memory.

    I wish we lived closer. I've always wanted to be a runner and I would love a workout buddy!

    ReplyDelete
  42. Peter's you-forgot-to-give-me-credit-for-coming-to-find-you-at-the-last-minute 'update' had me in stitches. It is so like Ray to want public accolades for the least little thing. I am impressed with all of you! My kids would have been piggybacking for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  43. @Mary- I'm worried about my knees, but I've used it as an excuse too long without actually testing it. I might try the toed shoes. I have a slight complex from being quacked at as I walked down the hallway at high school.

    @crush- Thanks for stopping by. I hope the kids remember it as a great experience, I guess we'll see the next time we ask them if they want to go to a 5K race.

    ReplyDelete
  44. @Kristen- That would be lovely. Unfortunately we've lived in similar places, just not at concurrent times. I always hope our adventures become beloved family storied someday. Having the blog should "help" us remember.

    @Aubrey- My kids would have been piggybacking if I'd let them, but I made it clear that wasn't an option. I thought Peter's updates were funny, too. I keep trying to get him to comment on the blog and not by email.

    ReplyDelete