I got to cross a bucket list item off my list recently. And now that I’m on the other side, I have been reflecting on the process it took to get here. I learned some things about myself that I wasn’t aware of previously. I think they call that personal growth, right? And I proved to myself that I can do anything I set my mind to. Anything.
Four months ago, I’d been toying with the idea of finding a fun run or 5K to participate in. Many of my friends have done them and the fun pictures they post afterward when they are covered in paint or colors or glow necklaces always sparked interest and the thought that it looked fun! It’s funny how the Universe works. Not long after, the news that Thor’s Trial was coming to
Pocatello made itself known among my friends, fellow coaches, and the amazing marketing girl at my office. We thought, let’s do it! And not long after, we were registered and ready to compete.
In my mind, I thought, “I have 4 months to train. I’ve already been lifting weights for a few months and seeing results, so I should be fine.” The first few training sessions at the gym were great. What wasn’t so great was the running. I had to learn how to be a runner – something I’ve never done before other than running bases in softball, but even that was ages ago! This type of running is different. Slow and steady. Not quick sprints that only last for 60ish feet at a time. Add elevation, rocks, weeds, twigs, and cow poop to the mix and you’ve got your own obstacle course without actually adding any obstacles!
So, we began training. At first, it was a few days a week at the gym and 2-3 days a week on the trails. I spent more time walking than jogging, but I was doing it. I had moments when I seriously questioned my sanity, but I was out there. For the past 4 months, I’ve spent more time being sore (at least a little bit) than not. Every day was something new, a new muscle being discovered. Both due to the ache as well as the newfound tone I was observing.
Physically, the muscles all over my body began to change. My arms and legs became much more toned. My
stomach became more strong. Gotta love those planks! My ankles became more able to endure the terrain. And I feel like my body temperature might have even raised a few degrees. Going out in the early mornings in 60 degrees became the ideal temp to run in. By the end of a 3-mile run, I was in my tank top and shorts and still sweating like a pig! lol
Mentally, I learned things about myself that were very interesting. Fears started appearing. Fears I didn’t know I had – especially as the race got closer. Thoughts of inadequacy began. Thoughts that I wasn’t good enough to compete with these athletes. Thoughts that I’d hold my team back. I know we all have them, but I began to hear my negative self-talk – really hear it. I was appalled. But, I tried to be gentle. I allowed myself to recognize this was a thing within me. I acknowledged it, and I’ve allowed myself to move past it. There’s no place here for that type of behavior. I don’t allow it from my kids and I most certainly won’t allow it from myself. That’s growth, right?
Four months came and went in a blink of an eye. Race day was here. It was time to show myself and those who have been hearing my stories of this race that I was actually doing this. We got to the trail and the temperature was around 55 degrees. It was raining lightly, so we were cold before we even got started. Our start time was 11am so we got a quick warm up in and set off to hit the trail. If you are not familiar with the mountains of Idaho, then let me tell you, they are a sight to behold. It’s glorious here. So beautiful. But
this particular mountain would challenge us with an 1100-feet elevation gain between the beginning and end of the race – to give you an idea of what we were about to conquer.
We saw obstacles that any fan of Thor would appreciate. Walls, cargo nets,
ropes, traverse lines, slack lines, log carries, balancing obstacles, teeter-totters, you name it, we had it. There were 20 obstacles altogether. And the way this race was split was that all of the obstacles had either a Thor or a LokiDivision. Thor was harder, but faster, Loki was easier, but longer. We stayed Thor the entire time (Go Team!) Our time was just under 3 hours to complete the 6-mile course. I feel like at least 45 minutes of that was waiting in line for other teams to finish the obstacle so we could have our turn.
All in all, we did great and placed 11th out of 25 teams who stayed in the Thor Division. Not bad for someone who has never done anything like this in her life! It was an experience I’ll be grateful I did and as crazy as it sounds, I’mlooking forward to the next one! These girl muscles will leave quicker than it took to achieve them, and I need something to keep me motivated to continue working out!! What is a bucket list item you’ve achieved? I’d love to hear about it!