The organizers an volunteers put so much into pulling off this fantastic event. I'd signed up to do the final leg again this year. My dad came out to participate, and be my safety net, if need be. On Saturday, we attended the race expo. The highlight for me was attending a talk by Colleen Kelly Alexaner. She was hit by an 18 wheeler, while cycling, and is still out there pushing her limits. Se also survived cardiac arrest, though hers were due to dramatic blood loss, whereas mine was due to enzyme imbalance. By no means do I envy her story of survival, though I'd love to be able to say I got a brain injury from being hit by a Mack truck, no, 't I have a brain injury because I didn't put enough consideration into the contraceptive l took (Yaz), and it caused my heart to stop, and deprived my brain of oxygen. People stare blanly for a reson, it doesn't make sense. I have the least cool or badass sounding reason for a brain injury.
The next morning, my dad and I convened at the gym where I do PT, to get our bibs, and make a plan with the other teammates. After almost an hour passed, we bailed to grab a 'super healthy' pre-race breakfast at the Skinny Pancake. If I ever get to the point where I'm able to push myself aerobicaly while running, I could never go out for breakfast pre-race, though a 4.5 mile jog, I could handle my egg and cheese crepe, and feel alright. However, there was a door handle incident, I did not handle well. I was returning from the bathroom, and as I opened the back door to go into the restaurant, the guy behind me rips the door out of my hand, I assume in an effort to helpful. However the way my wrist was aligned with the door, it became jammed in the handle, and was dragged forward unexpectedly. Serious pain. I instantly had to resist the urge to start blindly cursing, as the pain hit, accompanied by a bizarre tingling. The guy apoligized but I was already crying, and hoping I could still push the jogger with it. Thankfully, the initial pain dissipated as we got ice on it. As we left, my dad wrapped the wrist in a towel. As I'd forgotten sunscreen, I received a pretty special tan, resembling a gauntlett. Good stuff, I'd forgotten how much sunburns suck, I can't remember having a burn that aggressive. Oh well, lesson learned, always have sunscreen on hand.
We waited at the hand-off area for nearly an hour. Just as I decided to visit the bathroom again, they came in. I was pretty mad at myself for not going earlier, not a great mindset to start off in. Most of the runners who passed were toast, and unable to respond to encouragement, or questions. Though a fair number encouraged me, in passing. Much of the final leg is on the bike path, next to Lake Champlain, which offers a slightly cooler breeze. I imagine we finished earlier than last year, as there was still pizza, loads of food, as well as free massages. I felt sheepish approaching the massage tent for running 5 miles, but they weren't busy, and willingly accepted us.
The glory of doing the last leg, was realized by me for the first time this year. I'm not great at dealing with crowds, though I did see several local college friends, which made it super exciting to catch up with them.
As things started to look like they were wrapping up, we took my friend Ann's offer, to come over, and visit. I had to resist the urge to mock the 19th century hand powered mower she was using. It's actually brilliant as there are no emissions, and you, the user, is the only power it requires. I love that it's her choice of mowers, but I still want to mock it. So badly.
In my true form, I neglected to lift my foot high enough to compsate for the door jam, and fell down. Thankfully, Ann has known me a long time, and is used to my clumsiness. She and my dad pulled me back up, and we continued inside. I listened to shop talk about home renovations. It was somewhat amusing, as they are each so humble about their accomplishments. I suppose we were all well matched in the clumsiness department. I often forget how easy it is to hurt yourself, for anyone. Probably because I happen to do it so requently. I generally wear clothes that cover my arrays of scrapes and contusions, so people don't have the opportunity to realize how often I fall, or walk into things, or anything else. My least favorite part of summer, is the number of concerned comments, or questions I get, regarding my minor injuries. Although I appreciate that people are concerned, because it reminds me of my own idiocy. I don't generally respond to the concern, as well as I should. I'm relearning or attempting to receive these questions more gracefully. In 2011 I managed to acquire 11 black eyes, many fom falling, and not having the reaction to put out my hands. That's a learned physical reaction we acquire to protect our faces/heads. Trust me, that was not a fun reaction to learn to reacquire. Although, everytime I fall now, and my hands go out, I'm beyond thankful for the brains plasticity.
In conclusion, it was a fantastic race weekend, I got to see my family, and old friend. I got to be part of a great race, and meet some incredible people along the way.