I entered my first race at the weekend. I’m going to write another post on this soon about the race itself and the training I did for it but right now I want to focus on one small but hugely important aspect of the race that made it so much more enjoyable and worthwhile.
I got off to a good start in the race, I was going at a good pace and I was enjoying myself but when I hit 4.5km I started to feel a bit deflated. I thought of the hill I just ran up and the long road I ran that seemed never ending, there was nothing pretty about it, no grass or trees; nothing. I thought of the 0.5km I had yet to do and the 5km I had to do to complete the race and I began to regret signing up for the 10km and started wishing I signed up for the 5km instead.
I knew I wasn’t going to quit, I’d trained way too hard to let all that go to waste. Instead I slowed by jog down to a brisk walk and took a big drink of my water. Two ladies ran up behind me. Both were dressed in bright red t-shirts and had big smiles on their faces. They slowed down to my pace and turned to me. “You’re doing really well” one of them said. “Thanks” I replied. “You are brilliant”, the other lady said. I smile and gave a little nervous laugh. “No, you really are brilliant” she repeated.
Despite feeling a little awkward I felt so touched and grateful. These two ladies didn’t know anything about me yet they took the time to slow down during a race to spur me on and encourage me to keep going. I kept running. I’m not going to lie, I still had moments of self doubt throughout the rest of the race but the kindness they showed me made it a whole lot easier and enjoyable. I wasn’t dreading the next kilometre instead I was looking forward to each step I was taking.
I met the ladies again at the finish line and they said “We knew you could do it”. People can be so kind and thoughtful and some day I want to be that person for someone else because it can honestly make the world of difference.
I’m so happy I did that race and I’m delighted I met those lovely ladies.
What are you grateful for?