Oh dear, I had a feeling it would finally happen. I blame it on the law of attraction or that crazy Oprah-endorsed book everyone was talking about years ago. Whichever one came first.
I throw around the word “crash” like it’s going out of style. It’s my brand, who I am, and rolls off the tongue a helluva lot better than “stopping by for a workout.” But come 8:30 a.m. on Saturday morning, crash was the last thing I wanted to talk about. Don’t let that smile fool you, I was not a happy camper.
You see, I was joining the DC Road Runners for their famed Saturday Long Run to check the box on my last long run of Rock ‘n Roll half marathon training. They typically have a large group with varied paces, fun routes, and gatorade at the finish. Since I was afraid I’d run myself right into the lion exhibit if I had to chug through the zoo one more time, I drove over to Iwo Jima for a change of scenery. The route we were running wound up the Glover Archbold trail to Massachusettes Ave and back down on the C & O path. Varied surfaces, elevations, and an all-together solid route.
That is…until I fumbled in my pocket to for my camera take a photo of the scenery around mile two. Turns out I can’t run and take photos at the same time. Before I knew it, my left foot caught a rock, I caught air, and my right knee divebombed into a rock. Camera went flying into the dirt. Pride along with it. Ouch on so many levels.
Actually not a bad shot for being taken in mid air, wouldn’t you say? After I dusted myself off, wiped off the blood and tears, I had a decision to make: catch up to the group and finish this last training run as best I could, or call it a day and hobble back to the car. I really, really wanted to go with option two. But being stubborn and a tad competitive, I decided to stick it out and see how far I could go on a bum knee. I must have been a sorry sight hobbling up Massachusetts Avenue, shirt and spandex covered in dirt with a wild, crazed look in my eyes. Like a muddied Quasimoto hurtling toward some distant finish line. Left. Right. *wince* Left. Right. *wince*
I made it a grand total of 11 miles out of the 13 before slowing it down to a limp somewhere before Rosslyn. Those red solo cups full of orange gatorade greeting me at the finish may as well have been victory goblets. I was so ecstatic to be finished. There were not a lot of runners left hanging out at the rally area when I arrived, but to those few who were there to witness my arms-in-the-air finish, thank you for your words of encouragement.
Running after falling wasn’t the smartest decision I’ve ever made, but I’m glad I took a risk and continued on despite the cuts and bruises. Now, if my “cranky” left knee with the injured meniscus started to bark during the run, it’d be a different story. I don’t advocate in any way running through internal pain or lingering injuries. But I knew I was essentially fine despite some surface area scrapes that stung and zinged along the miles. That said…I hope this will be the first and last real crash during a fit crash.
And you know what? After that kind of a morning, squeezing into a tiny wetsuit for the first time in years really didn’t seem too bad. Why was I wearing a sleeveless neoprene body suit in February after running 11 miles with a hurt knee, you ask? Was I hoping it’d serve as some sort of full-body compression sock? Keep me warm during post-run errands? No my friends. Better.
Sam from GrohNola hatched the crazy idea of pulling together a Harlem Shake video. Don’t worry, I had to look it up too. Why I offered to dress up in a wetsuit, swim cap, goggles, and race belt…I have no idea. But I’m sure glad I did, because it was a hilariously good time. Thanks to everybody for coming out, and a special thanks to the random tourists who agreed to join in the fun. Check out the video – hope it makes you laugh, smile, and laugh again!