My plan for my 8th half of 2013 quickly changed on Friday when my priorities in life changed in seconds. Like I mentioned on Friday we had another appointment with Morgan to discuss his on going leg pain and thinking we were ending with an ortho consult and likely ACL surgery. Well as we walked out the vet made a last minute decision to redo an xray from last month to get a better view of something and that’s when the bad news came. Morgan’s knee is fine, instead there is a tumor on his femur. The likely cause of this is osteosarcoma and the only treatment is to remove the tumor which is his case means amputation. This would then be followed by chemo since most dogs already have some metastasis. The worst part, besides knowing that this is cancer, is the pain that the leg is causing him. We are working hard on pain medication and keeping him resting but with an active 70lb dog that is rough.
When I woke on Saturday morning for the race I was not focused and just wanted to run for myself. As my typical pre-race this summer I haven’t felt “right” when I get there, just lacking that feeling of strength and force to run. We grabbed our race bibs and headed to the start for the first ever pre-race briefing at a road race, yep this is sponsored by a triathlon group! I was amazed to see how many people had lined up so early for a small race, the difference between triathletes and runners! It was hot and thick, 70s already before race start. As start time neared I lined up by the 1:40 pacer and noticed I was one of the few women up here! And we were off…
I cranked my iPod and got lost in my own run, I soon found myself running what felt super easy with the 1:35 pacer, nice! I kept running and had a great (timewise) first 4 miles then the course turned and the shade was gone, ugh! And soon so was the road, what?! I thought this was a road race but we were now running an uphill portion of an acorn covered trail, ouch! I was thrilled to see the road returning but soon discovered this was not great either…bring on the heat and bugs! We ran a long stretch on a road along a field and were swarmed by bugs, soon my back was covered with bugs stuck to my sweat and I’m sure I ate my share. This was not going over well since I am terrified of any type of insect, yes full out phobia!
During this horrendous stretch I passed a dog walking who looked very much like my happy Morgan and as he had been in my mind all morning, it hit me I was running for my first real running buddy. Time didn’t matter, the discomfort I had was nothing compared to his leg pain and I could do this. I was running for all the miles we had logged. I was soon fighting the tears again as I ran and remembering some of our runs. Including the time I stupidly pointed out ducks and he proceeded to run down a muddy hill with me pulling me face first into a pile of goose poop! A little naughty and impulsive at times!
With just a couple miles to go I found the energy and ran, passed the girl in the blue stripes who had passed me along the nasty road stretch and made it my goal to keep in front. Soon I saw the final turn and ran, so happy to be done! I had slowed, I didn’t care, it was tough and I ran for me and Morgan. After grabbing food I stopped my watch 1:45, not great but not terrible and I had overdone the runs the week before.
I waited for Matt to finish and then headed in to check results. 3rd place! Nice, the course was tough and hot and everyone had slowed down. Just over 1:45, so we waited for awards and soon blue stripe girl was walking up for 3rd place, strange. Afterwards I asked the RD and somehow she now had my time and I had a time of 1:47?? He said her chip didn’t register so they had to “figure it out”. Interesting that my time was now 2 minutes slower, and in a straight gun time race I placed behind someone who finished after me, but whatever I know the real results. We headed home to catch O walking in her first parade to help out our friend’s restaurant, we actually made it in time to walk with them too.