This Sunday is the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run, my third attempt at the race. The first year, 2012, I was selected via the lottery for the run. However, I injured myself a week before the race and did not start (my first DNS). Last year, I was battling crippling shin splints and hoped to make it to my goal race, the Nike Women’s Half Marathon, which was taking place a couple weeks after the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, injury-free. But, because I was selected in the lottery and had that awful DNS from the previous year, I was determined to run. So, I started the race and immediately knew it was a bad idea. Each step nearly brought tears to my eyes; by mile 4.5 I did have tears in my eyes. For some reason, I wanted to “tough” it out and not quit. I realized though as I neared the entrance to Hains Point that I wouldn’t be able to continue running and to try to finish was ridiculous. Each step threatened the Nike Women’s Half Marathon which was my “A” race so when I hit mile marker 5, I stopped running and ducked into a port-o-potty to cry. I’ve never quit a race mid-run and wasn’t sure what to do so I took off my bib and threw it away. I hobbled to the car park and cried while I waited for my husband to finish. I was more upset about the DNF than the DNS. I told my husband that I just wasn’t mean to run the Cherry Blossom so I didn’t even plan to enter the lottery for this year’s race. However, the day before the deadline, a friend emailed to ask if I wanted to join her team registration for the lottery. I figured my odds of getting in for a third year were slim to none so I said yes. Imagine my surprise when we were selected in the lottery!
The third time is the charm. This is the year I crush the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler!