The Swamp Run

Confession: I’ve never run a 5K. How is it possible that I’ve been running now for a few years, completed five half marathons, am signed up for two more halfs, am training for a full and have never run a 5K?

Yesterday, a coworker, who knows I dig hitting the pavement, was telling me about a 5K happening this weekend in a nearby town. I considered it for a few minutes but decided that it seemed silly to pay $25 and drive 45 minutes round trip to run for 30 minutes.

I think my slowness is why 5Ks hold little appeal. I’m not working on running a “sub-20” 5K because in all honestly, I probably couldn’t run one in under 30 minutes. I would rather feel the accomplishment of a distance race or even training run than to spend my precious Saturday running time doing a 5K.

Now, this is not to say I haven’t participated in a 5K before.

The organization I work for puts on a benefit 5K each year that I help with; but I’m always behind the scenes rather than on the course.

I walked a 5K when I was five months pregnant.

Pregnancy does not agree with me!

I pushed J-Roll in a “Monster Dash 5K” last Halloween.

The Monster Dash!

Back in the day we walked/carried our two puppies in a charity Dog Walk.

But my most memorable 5K participation of all was an adventure 5K we did in Florida last summer.

First off, who plans to run a 5K on their first day of vacation? My sinister husband. That’s who.

Why relax on the beach when you can run a 5k????

We (the hubs, my sister and her husband) left our children with my parents at the condo we were renting on a very lovely, relaxing beach and drove a half hour to hell a Nature Park.

Sign of trouble No. 1:

The race started at 9 a.m. in August in Florida. Hello 100 degree temperatures.

Sign of trouble No. 2:

I was surrounded by people in Ironman t-shirts.

This was after I had a baby and before I started running again so I planned on walking this shindig but everyone around me looked like they were in Olympic training.

Sign of trouble No. 3:

The organizers announced right before the race start that due to heavy rains and flooding some of the “obstacles” had to be “altered.” Ok, I know I signed up for an adventure run, but I thought I just had to jump through a tire a time or two or maybe answer a hard math question.

Sign of trouble No. 4:

Swamp waters.

The start gun sounded and the hubs and sister took off on their speedy ways. As soon as we turned the first corner there was a swamp.

And I was expected to run through it.

Let me repeat… a swamp!

Hoping that this was a one-time occurrence along the way, I jumped into the waist-high water and slugged through. Unfortunately, this swamp was followed by about 2.9 miles of swamp.

Apparently it would have been better named ” The Swamp Race” than “Adventure Run” since swamps and four tires at the end were the only obstacles. To top it off, the water smelled like poop. I was swimming in poop water that I was convinced was filled with snakes (glad that I wasn’t reminded about alligators until later).

It. Was. Disgusting.

Needless to say, I was not a happy camper.  I cried. I cursed. I called my brother-in-law a Saint for sticking with me and I called my husband much less kind names for getting me into this race.

I kind of wish I had a picture of me crossing the finish line. I was walking around the tires (I refused to participate in the tire jump at that point, I’m a swell sport) and I heard the director whispering to her friend “that one won’t be coming back next year” while looking at me.

It’s a good thing I had a week-long vacation following that race. I needed it! Along with a tetanus shot.


2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    emilyb said,

    Ewww! I just ran a 5K that involved a creek/stream crossing, so I totally sympathize with the swamp crossing. You should try one on the road that’s obstacle-free next time!

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