I face-planted on rocky, New England dirt, next to a peaceful cemetery that was decorated with golden trees and stone walls. Face-planted. Hang on, let me back up a few moments and miles.
A few weeks back I registered for my very first 5k, which was also a fundraiser. I signed up to support the cause (Amirah fights human trafficking) and my friend, Fit Chick #3, Steph who is the agency’s director. I knew I would be in Boston at the time and it seemed too perfect. I had never really set out to walk a specific distance aside from the occasional one-mile walk near my parent’s farm. I had no idea what 3.1 miles would look or feel like to my body. I imagined it would be something like walking pleasantly through fall leaves, smelling the brisk air and reflecting on life. Then we arrived to THE LAKE. I got out of the car and looked at this mother of a lake. Freaking BODY OF WATER. Ummm I usually look for close parking spaces at stores. The distance around this lake was like as if I was headed to the mall at Christmastime and decided to park at the freaking expressway, nowhere near the freaking stores!!! It looked far!!! Have you entered into the drama that was spinning through my mind yet? I was freaked out. Like, ok I might make it halfway around this mug.
Then we started walking. Quick shout-out to Steph & Dave (Steph’s husband). They each walked with me and kept me encouraged and a lot of the time, distracted with great conversation and hilarious stories. My mind vacillated constantly between “there’s no way I can finish this” and “oh my gosh, I’m freaking doing this!” My mind does that. I think most of our minds have that little evil voice that keeps stomping on what we try to do. We dismiss it or listen to it. Anyways, after a mile, I was breathing so loud. You know how you try to be cool when you walk up the stairs like “What?! I’m fit!” There was no hiding this. Imagine Beyonce’s song “Lose My Breath.” It was something like that dramatic gasp for air (YouTube the song). Then I made it to the beautiful, serene cemetery. It was gorgeous. I was almost done. I had about a half mile to go. I looked to the right, saw the gorgeous cemetery with golden leaves and seriously old headstones. Then I immediately face-planted into the dirt. I got up, dusted off and kept going. I don’t have any deep thoughts on the fall like “don’t take your eyes off the path that you’re on” or “when you fall, get back up and try again!” I just thought it was a funny part of the story.
When we finally reached the end of the path, I was excited. But that evil little voice came in and was like “uh, you know it was just 3 miles, right? It wasn’t a marathon. You didn’t run it. You walked 3 miles and some change.” So what did I learn from my very first 5k? We all start somewhere. That’s what I learned and that’s what I told that little evil voice inside. I pushed my body and walked a freaking 5k. For some, it’s going to be a marathon and for some it’s half a mile. We all start somewhere. And little evil voices can kick rocks.