Many people often ask me about what I do to stay healthy post surgery, post health scare. Well, here is a glimpse of the time when I attempted to do a mud run…with my mother. Just a few of my crazy antics on my journey to health. Check out Part 1. And here is Part 2:
On the other side of the woods we run into three big lakes. No problem! We can swim. We just walked through the first one. The second one had ropes on each side. As we continued to walk, we realize the lake was 6 feet deep! Wait, what? That explains why I can’t feel the ground. This part was not in the informational video. We quickly swim through with the help of the rope.
“I think I quit,” mom said.
“Quit what?” I replied.
“My body is not cut out for the mud run.”
I guess this is the coaching part, but my competitive spirit took over. Maybe it was the thought that she dragged me to the gym almost every day to train or that she even talked me into doing this race in the first place. Plus the $60 entrance fee. Besides, I think I just swallowed a gallon of muddy water.
“The hell we ain’t,” I said. “We’re not quitters.” “You’re going to finish this race.”
It looks like she got more than what she bargained for, because from the expression on her face she didn’t know which was worse, her daughter yelling in front of more than a 1,000 people or the fact that I just talked to her like she was some girl out in the street. But desperate times call for desperate measures.
I could tell she took what I said into serious consideration, because she swam through the other lake with no problem. The only thing I heard her say was, “Use the rope and keep your chin up.” She was done after that. But the hills were next. We climbed about 5 hills before we reached the water slide. We both looked down from the top of the hill as more people slid down.
“This is supposed to be the fun part, right?” I asked.
“It looks like fun,” mom responded. “Come on Jen, we can do it.”
Since when did she get all optimistic, I thought. Just five hills ago she wanted to quit, and we haven’t even hit the first mile marker. That transference of emotions/energy thing is real. I just gave her everything I had and she gladly took it. Mom slides down first and from what I can tell the water is not that deep. I decided to slide right after. For a split second I forgot I had on contacts. As I came down the slide, my head goes all the way in the water. Not again, I thought. But then I realized this water screams infection! I’m borderline OCD. I don’t like dirt. Then my eyes started to burn. Oh no, chlorine!! Mom could see the panic on my face. She said, “Whatever you do, don’t put your hands in your eyes.”
“There is a water station just up ahead,” a runner said. Praise Jesus.
We finally approach mile marker one, then two. Mom is still power walking as more people run past us. “Are you ever going to run?” I asked. “You did not convince me to run 3 miles every other day to just walk.” Mom never responds. Instead she walks just a little bit slower and a few more people dash in front of us. I noticed everyone’s numbers. We’re team 408. There are more runners with team numbers in the 700’s. Our wave is far ahead of us. As for the rest of our teammates, they were ahead of us in the beginning. I decide to take a stand. My competitive spirit comes back. Maybe it’s in the air.
“We’re not going to finish last.” I said. “I don’t care what we have to do, but we are not going to finish last.” Mom forgot there were timing chips in our numbers.
We finally get to an opened field when I see water. Not just a drop of water, but a lot of it. This water is not a mirage, I told myself. And you know what? I don’t care if the water is a mirage. I’m dirty, sweaty, and hot. I need some relief. But I would be concerned if I ran towards it and I would slip and fall into a pile of mud if it was a mirage. That’s all I need at this point. But it’s not a mirage. The fire department thought it would be a good idea to hose us down in the middle of the race. They are pointing water hoses towards us. Not one, but three.
“Look, Mom!” I said. “There’s water!” She never responded. I think she zoned herself out, thinking of better days. We haul our butts as fast as we could through the water. As soon as we finished running, she screamed “My ankle!” At this point, I’m not hearing it. One part of me is probably in denial that she actually sprained her ankle and the other part of me is thinking we’re in the middle of nowhere. Who is going to come and rescue us? I don’t have my phone. On the other hand, this was her plan the whole time. Fake an injury and get out while she can. Not on my watch.
Part 3, next week.