I was to do a 10K kickdown this morning. I was excited about it, though I will admit I was a touch apprehensive as to how my body would hold up.
The weather was glorious and I was in a good mood as I drove to the park to start my workout (I like to do the kickdowns on a relatively flat course, hence the driving). It was 54F (12C) and calm, and the sun was up early since it's nearing summer, and it was beautiful outside.
I got started and was feeling I was moving pretty well. I felt I was using my hips properly, and was shocked when at 500m my watch said 3:23! WHAT?!?!?!? Surely I couldn't be that slow???? But I guess I was. By 2.5km I knew it was going to be a bad day. I was doing 6:30 pace and my legs felt heavy and tired. I stopped and called Erin (a much faster walker who also works with Jim) because she is in New York and I knew she'd be awake. She was VERY sympathetic and understanding, as she's recently been in the same boat as me. I was so frustrated I was crying, and she just listened and encouraged me to listen to my body and know that I was not a failure and that things will improve eventually. Now I knew all of these things, but when you are in the middle of it it just doesn't feel good and you need the reminders.
So, I stretched a bit and walked back to the park at the same lousy 6:30/km pace (keeping good form - I'm sure of this!), but I felt much better mentally. Not great, mind you, but much better. I have to adjust my expectations. I will be lucky just to finish the 15K race in Riverside. It won't be a race for me. And I'm not sure I'm 100% OK with that right now, but I will be by the time we get there. I've been planning to go with Nancy and Kathy for quite a while, and we are entered as a team along with Denise (from San Diego, friends with Bonnie in our club here).
It's not all sour grapes. I'm truly happy I can racewalk again, and it's a gift to be able to do it at all, even if I'm slow. And Erin pointed out to me that patience is not our strong point...that's why we're competitive, because we push hard and want to do well. Being patient is part of that game, and I'm learning that too, slowly.
I rode my bike to work again today, which is great exercise because it's almost 100% uphill. The flowers are blooming, and it was sunny, and it was great to be outside.
Garmin data on 5K walk here.