Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Play the Cards You're Dealt!

It is certainly harder than it seems to Play the Cards your Dealt when you’re in the thick of a perceived unfair situation! I am usually a person that faces adversity head on and just scoffs at it. Sometimes it can get the best of me, and I can take a day or two to reflect and remind myself that every experience is a LEARNING experience.

I had my first race of the season on Sunday, and I am still mad about it, but I’m getting over it. I always have two goals when doing a race: 1). Finish and 2). Not last. Well… this time I crossed the finish line DEAD LAST, complete with my own police escort! It was incredibly frustrating, but my friends are awesome, supportive, and reminded me that its not about ‘last’, it’s really about finishing. And they ALL reminded me that I did overcome some goofy circumstances to actually finish the race as well. I chose not to give up! And now I officially chose not to be mad .

One of the cards I typically have to play is that I’m a migraine sufferer. 3AM before the race I awoke to a throbbing head! I had talked SEVERAL friends into doing this race, and it was going to be a beautiful day. I decided I wasn’t going to let my head stop me. Mind over matter!

I had to eat a little different than normal with the head issues, so I was a little concerned (as long as I didn’t have an “issue” in the pool – I would be ok). I got to the race site and was feeling a little better, fresh air, friends, first race, only 4 people in my category- hey I can still place, right?

The race was a pool race where 1 swimmer starts every 20 seconds and you go up and down the lanes of the pool. You start by your estimated pool time. I should have been categorized in the 6:30, but after looking around me and asking I somehow was placed with the 10-11 min folks. I didn’t want to have to try to PASS people the whole time in the pool so I asked about it. It turned out that they screwed up several swimmers, and were going to have a second START to the race.

I’m an ok swimmer, but a very poor runner. I like to be in the middle of the starts so I have a decent chance of having others around me while riding or running! The 2nd start put me almost to the back of the STARTS! (About 20 people behind me). UGH!! In hindsight, I should have just dealt with the 10 min swim time! I did end up first in my category on the swim though!

The bike ride was rather uneventful, I didn’t push myself though because 1) the migraine and 2) no one around to push me. I’m rather competitive and like to have others around! “on your left” gets me going.. I ended up coming in 3rd on the bike, but hey I did beat the #1 person in my category .

I entered the transition area to rack my bike and some jerk had racked their bike ON MY STUFF!!! I have zero clue how one could do this when I was on an end with a crazy towel under it. So I lost at least a minute trying to deal with this! This of course, got me more frazzled, and then I started to notice my throbbing head again. I thought of the DNF.. (NO WAY, I refuse, they have to carry me away in an ambulance for that to happen).

I started off on my run only to see most of my friends sharing a drink because they were FINISHED with the race! I saw only ONE PERSON on the run.. This was SO frustrating! I kept thinking “Laura you should run” but I just couldn’t. I kept thinking “well if someone was near me maybe I’d try to chase them.” Then I saw the police escort and it just made me mad. She was very nice and encouraging, but still, I was going to cross the finish line LAST! DEAD LAST!! The Volunteers had to wait for me! They were taking down the cones as I came across, and they were half way through the awards ceremony! (I did win a pair of shorts though). My Friends were awesome, Michele ran the last .5 miles or so with me and made me run.. Anne, Alexis and Michele rounded the corner as I literally crossed the finish line… LAST!

I got two things out of my way this week:
1) Doing a race with boys.. – ok no big deal, I really just did a race ALONE..
2) Finishing last.. that sucked, I really don’t want to do that again, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought and it will just make me run faster I suppose so it WON'T happen again.

Sometimes you just have to play the cards you’re dealt and learn from it, grow from it, and well, suck it up!


  1. Laura,
    There were so many messed up things about that race; but you DID it! My take from the race, after finishing the swim in about 2x your time, and being slower on the run than I'd like, is that it was a solid season opener that underscored the areas that I need to work hard on if I want to be happy with my results this season. You're completely right to take it as a learning experience. Onward and upward!!

  2. Again, I'm so very proud of Laura for all her accomplishments and there are many more to come. Great work! Love you! JohnB