But I wasn't the slowest, either.
And as a middle-aged adult, I was putting in respectable times, 22-23 minutes for 5ks, finishing the first half of a marathon in under two hours, hitting a personal record of 4.06 two years ago at age 50!
So when this hip injury sidelined me, I was bummed. I was on my way to breaking the four-hour marathon!
But I had to stop running for a year, until I finally got diagnosed with a Sacro-ilial joint injury and got referred to a specialist for steroid injections. He told me to stop running until he was through treating me.
After my last steroid injection, he advised that I could run again, but not all out like I used to run. Two-three miles at the most. He said my disks were so shot, running for me was akin to riding on the rims of a car after the tires had blown.
I've got news for him: I couldn't if I wanted to.
Now, I find myself running at a 10-11 minute pace, barely covering 3 miles in under 40 minutes. I suppose that is what my doctor had in mind when he said to "use it, but cruise it."
Today was my fourth run since he gave me the green light. I'd say my pace has picked up since that first run, and the pain doesn't increase after a run. Those are good signs. My goal is to slowly and steadily improve my pace to under 10 minutes a mile.
Ultimately, I want to get to where a 9-minute pace feels like cruising, not racing.
And I want to lose another 20 pounds. I reached 205 this morning, good for 6'1" but be better. I still feel like I'm holding a 20-pound bowling ball in my lap when I sit down.
Slowly, once again, I am becoming master of my own universe again.
Now some Pulp: