By: Victoria Hernandez
Sunrise 6K means #texansdoitbetter aka #np_pledgetakeover
The weather was cool, but not too cool. The air was crisp. A small gust of wind. *Gentle music begins.*
I wake up. It’s race day. I get dressed, kiss Mr. Kitty bye and carry on my wayward soul to Margaret Hunt Bridge.
As I’m driving up the road I see cars everywhere. Exponentially more than normal for our typical Friday spot. The hype grows within. I get my bib and join everyone at the start where the bounce is coming soon. I see some old friends, and new. Hugs all around. Seeing so many smiling faces this early in the morning could make anyone’s day.
Voices cry out and seconds later the race starts. I follow the crowd. I certainly don’t belong in the front, but I ain’t walking either. I try to start off slow and pace myself, yet my competitive nature takes over. I’m running at what I think is a 10-minute pace, keeping up with a group of people. I’m wrong. So wrong.
My tiredness creeps up on me. (I didn’t take pre-workout before the race because the last two times that i did take pre-workout before a workout ended up with a lot of gagging and spit up. Yuck, I know.) I slow down and and let others pass. I’m still not last. And honestly, that’s all I *really* care about anyway, for the time being.
I also want to mention that trail running, which is kinda what this was, isn’t my thing. At all. I try to stick to pavement. It’s predictable. Nothing to trip over, normally. It’s still outside in the fresh air, and not on the dreadmill...I digress.
Where the heck is the turnaround point!
The fastest runners keep going forever forward. No one has come back from the turnaround point. Just going, and going, and going. I’m thinking to myself, these-people-should-be-running-back-toward-me-by-now-and-they-definitely-are-not-and-that-concerns-me-and-I-just-want-to-turn-around-and-eat.
Finally, at a distance, I see what looks like someone coming toward me. Yes, people have turned around. Praise Jesus!
As I keep trekking I see the actual point up ahead. My heart skips a beat. I turn back and pick up my pace a bit. I look up to the left to see the Dallas skyline. It’s actually kinda beautiful. Being from Houston I tend to be super biased and grew up anti-Dallas. But this place has grown on me. These people have take me in, making me feel like I belong here. (I know, tears, right?)
So I keep running. Jax is my personal pacer. We make our way toward the bridge, slowly building up speed. I accelerate across the bridge. And at the downhill I build up more speed. Faster. Faster. Faster. I sprint through the end into a crowd of people cheering.
It wasn’t quite the same feeling as finishing my marathon, but it was still fucking sweet. I have a huge shit-eating grin on my face as I’m handed my finisher’s medal - a bagel (one of my fav’s)! I felt bad that I had to leave early, missing out on all the photo-ops, but work calls. Besides, I know I’ll see everyone on Wednesday anyway.