“Let me go down in the mud, Where the rivers all run dry.” -The Pogues
In some strange way, the struggles of this week resulted in a great race today. I don’t know why, but I always seem to do better in life when the challenge is the hardest.
For the last two months, my training was great. I’ve been training at times I’ve never trained at before. The last couple of 5Ks I’ve run in I have finished well. My foot drop is still there, but the best it’s been in two years. I came to this week with a good foundation.
And then, for some reason, I thought it would be a good idea to get a cyst on my back removed on Monday. I’ve had this cyst removed twice before, so didn’t think it was a big deal. This time, the doctor dug a little deeper to get it all out. Since it was on my back I didn’t sleep well and the antibiotic has bothered my stomach all week. Two months of great training almost seemed lost to an ill-timed decision.
The running course itself was beautiful, through the woods of Delaware State Park, hugging the lake shore. I had been on parts of this trail before, on a hike with Nathan’s scout pack. But after spring Ohio rains, the trail that was dry in the fall turned to mud in March. I’ve never signed up for a mud run before, but unintentionally participated in one today. In the first half of the race I spent a lot of effort trying to avoid the mud as much as I could and find firmer ground. By the second half, I abandoned that effort and just ran straight through them.
I love trail running.
I even love the sound of my feet splashing in puddles.
Between a tired body and a soft earth, today was a recipe for disappointment. But the premise of this blog is perseverance. I am not the strongest, fastest, or smartest person around. But I will stick it out and keep my legs turning even when my feet are cold and wet.
Today, perseverance paid off, I finished as the second male, and was handed a recycled trophy with a coach on the top of it.
The greater the obstacles, the sweeter the victory.