Today I participated in my first 5k! Yep…two friends and I did the Mud Run.  We did what all serious marathon runners (ha) do…and that is get great accessories.  We had cute little pink shirts made up with the saying, “I thought they said RUM!”  They were a hit.  We got a lot of points, laughs, and “love it!” By the time we got to the start line, I were feeling pretty good.  And then they said GO!

My first big mistake was not listening to my boyfriend (I HATE even saying that!) when he kept saying all summer, “You better start training!”  I kept thinking…it’s SUMMER, I’m a teacher, I have TONS of fiction books to read, and tons of pages to write. Ugh…it seems my former Marine may have known what he was talking about!  One of my friends that participated with me today said she was just going to “wing it!” when I asked her about training…and that seemed like solid, sound advice…lol…so I decided I’d just wing it, too.  Not very smart!

I did okay the first couple miles…I honestly did!!!  There were mud pits to crawl through, steep cargo nets to climb over, walls to scale and crawl under, straps to walk on top of one foot at a time (very difficult for someone with no balance!)…all these things I did (EVERY ONE OF THEM) while sloshing through mud in 100 degree heat!  Okay, I did have help on the balance beam, but as a special education teacher, I take the “accommodation/modification” approach…my friends held my hands so I wouldn’t fall. I have NO balance. When we got to this balancing obstacle, Tangela says, “Oh, Jenna, you are @%!&#$!!!!!”   LOL…she was right.  But even with the help they had to give me, I honestly was still feeling great!!  THEN…the last half of the 5K came crashing down on top of me!!!

It was the last leg…the end was near…I could see the victory (finish) sign in the distance…people laughing and partying, music blaring…VICTORY WAS MINE!!  This may seem like a crazy thought, but by this time, I was beginning to get delirious…only I didn’t quite know it. Yes, victory was mine…until we actually came upon the last two sets of obstacles. One set was a huge, bounce house type slide.  Only, there was no stairs to climb up and slide down all graceful like…NO…you had to haul yourself UP THE STEEP RUBBERY, MUDDY INCLINE with only a nub and a rope!!!! WHAT THE !@#$#@!!!!  Who WERE these sadists!!!!Tangela went first (which was not the norm…she usually was the one to give me help), then Lodder and I went next.  Lodder takes off like a freaking ninja scaling a wall…and I start to panic!!  I get halfway up, and I start to almost cry.  I was physically exhausted, I’d been lifting my BODY WEIGHT for the past hour and a half…and it’s a hell of a lot of weight to be lifting!! LOL..and I had a momentary panic that for the first time, I couldn’t do this!!  Lodder is sitting on the top of the slide, telling me to grab on and to haul myself up (yeah, like THAT was going to just happen in my panic attack)…and I hear myself crying, “I need Tangela!  I need Tangela!”  Lodder calmed me down, I hauled my butt up the last bit, and we slid down the muddy, steep slide.  I stood up, but I couldn’t quit shaking.  Much to my dismay, not three feet away, was ANOTHER rubbery, muddy slide!  And here my friends, is where it gets comical!

Now, I did learn a lot about myself during this journey, and that is I admittedly have unresolved anger issues toward men.  Ha! This was a “women only” run, but men were allowed to watch…AND VIDEO!!!  Now, not all men were there solely to heckle the women, I know that…but I did hear some rather nasty comments…and I wasn’t exactly thrilled that they were allowed to video us!  Like we were going to be their comedy relief for the week!  This is important to know…because the next part is why I didn’t want ANYONE filming! LOL…so…this god-awful slide is mine to scale AGAIN!  By this time I am shaking pretty badly, and I seriously think I’m going to vomit. The three of us girls decide we will do this together…and we slowly take off.  Lodder and Tangela make it to the top and they turn to wait for me…and I WAS ALMOST THERE!!  I truly was ALMOST THERE…and the worst thing that could happen…happened!  I slipped….

Now, like on the first slide, the only thing you had were these little rubbery nubs sticking out of the steep incline and a rope.  When I slipped, my whole front side hit EVERY FREAKING NUB ON THE WAY DOWN!!!  Yes, this meant with every bump, my shirt inched upward!!  And with my shirt, also came my sports bra!!  I could feel the slide on my BARE STOMACH!!  Oh, the humiliation!!!  When I reached the bottom, I surreptitiously tried to pull my muddy shirt down, while listening for the sounds of babies screaming for their mothers about their eyes being burned!! LOL!!!!! I hauled myself up…and thought…that’s it, I’m going to conquer this b!tch!!!!

Only I didn’t.  I tried one more time, but I was shaking so badly, I couldn’t do it.  I had to tell Tangela and Lodder to go on down the slide without me.  I had to turn around and get off.  The other women there were very kind, asking me if I was all right, reaching their hands out to help me…I mumbled I was okay and tried to regain my kick-@ss attitude.  But I was having a hard time.  We finally get to the LAST obstacle, and it’s TWO eight-foot tall walls to climb over.  By this time, I was dizzy, unable to speak, weak, I think I was going blind in my right eye, I’m trying not to vomit, sweating, shaking, skin was sizzling in the blazing sun, and I was just really, REALLY ready to be done!  I climbed up the wall, Lodder reaches up (they have finished) to help me steady my leg, I’m leaning over the top of the wall, eight feet in the hair, and I think, “She’s going to be pissed if I puke on her!” LOL…and a part of me wanted to, because I wanted them to feel as badly as I did!!!  LOL…yep, I’m kinda a yucky friend when I’m having a heat stroke!!!! I swing my legs over, and down I shimmy.  We walk a few more feet, and there’s the LAST eight-foot wall to climb.  I absolutely could not make my feet do it.  I didn’t want the girls to have to wait on me, risk getting vomited on, or worse, fallen on….so I didn’t do my last obstacle!  Was I disappointed…YES.  But by this time I don’t really remember much else.  I know we made it to the finish line, had pictures snapped, and headed to our car.  I asked a lady to take our picture, or rather, I whispered it to her because for some reason I couldn’t speak.  The world was moving swiftly and my body felt like it was standing still and ready to implode. I had to close my eyes on the ride home, afraid I’d get sick in Lodder’s car.  James called me (I don’t even remember this) and he said I was slurring my words so badly he thought I was hurt or drinking! LOL…it’s hours later and I’m just now able to sit up without feeling like I’ll lose my insides, and I still have a huge headache.

Will I do it again…HECK YEAH…I’m looking forward to the Color Run, the Glow Run, and any other run I can find.  Because even though I am exhausted beyond anything I can ever remember…I actually was able to do something amazing!!  Something I didn’t know my body could do!!!