This weekend I embarked on a journey... walking a half-marathon. Yes, I know that most normal people actually run them - however, my group of walkers and I determined that our goal was to finish, not to make a good time! That being said... this was my adventure...
We arrived at the starting line an hour and a half early - it was a requirement, I would have rather had the extra sleep. So of course, my anxiety increased every moment we stood there. Finally we were asked to line up according to time. In the front were the people who run less than a 6 minute mile - apparently there are people who can?! On the other hand I was in the very back with my friends.
We started off strong and with all of the adrenaline pumping and the feeling of it being a race, I had to keep telling myself not to run! The first mile was the longest mile of my entire life! I tried to keep focused on walking in the middle of the road since it was the most level - but I can't walk a straight line for the life of me. Finally at mile two I was walking better - although kept psyching myself out. At mile three I had finally fond my groove and was walking along pretty quickly. Quick enough to feel like I was progressing better than mile 1 anyway. But then my feet started to hurt. I had put some padding stuff on my feet to keep me from getting blisters because my blister-free socks do not work as advertised. In any case, the padding had twisted and was giving me blisters - imagine that! At mile 4, I had to take off my shoes and socks to take off the padding. I noticed a small amount of blood on my socks but wasn't worried - and off I went. I was trucking along with my friends making good time but at mile 7 my feet started to burn!
[disclaimer - this could get graphic]
By mile 8 I couldn't walk a step further. Now, I was insanely disappointed because I can walk 13 miles! I can - I have walked them before so I was sure I would finish! I wanted to walk and I wanted to finish - but I couldn't make myself. 5 miles was too far for me to go to be able to finish. My feet were burning and liquid filled and I couldn't go on so I had to take the walk of shame to the sweeper van and end my half marathon. I had a nice ride and a nice chat with the driver but when I had some time alone in my car as I waited for my friends to finish, I had to cry... I was so ashamed and disappointed in myself. I wanted to finish and I know I can... It just wasn't going to happen that day!
My friends are amazing and they finished! I was so proud of them! I was worried about them so I kept driving up and down the route to make sure they hadn't been hit by a car, or eaten by a rattle snake (I'm not sure if there are rattle snakes there - but there probably are!), or severely dehydrated! The girls were amazing - and I cannot tell you how insanely jealous I was! Good for them!
My feet are attached still - which is about as good as it gets... my poor little toesies were blistered and bloody (I warned you - graphic) - and I can't walk at my regular speed even because they are so sore and still blistered...
I learned an important lesson I think - Just because you can walk 13 miles doesn't mean you should! Wait, that's not what I meant - Just because I didn't make it this time, doesn't mean I can't make it. I'm already planning on trying one in Arizona in January (any excuse for a vacation right?!) - it depends on the school schedule! So until then, I rest my poor feet until they are healed - and then I begin the torture again! Does anyone have a cure for blisters???