Probably a lot more to say about the psychology of the "longer is better" thing, but it's late, too late, and I'm getting up at around five to go in to work early. Well, earlier. Though the barista days are now long gone, that sort of schedule still makes sense to me. One of these days I may shake it. One day, I may be forced to. But not yet.
Anyway, I mentioned yesterday that I'm going to run a 5K this Saturday. I'd thought about jumping in anyway, but frankly, I'm a little scared to see numbers attached to my present fitness. It's irrational, and nobody but me cares... but still, that neurosis exists.
I pulled the trigger when one of the managing editors at my office asked if I was going to do the race. She suggested that maybe I might like to, if 5Ks weren't too easy for me, and that it was for a good cause (it really is).
That middle portion is what I'm talking about, and what I've talked about several times before. Recently. And not at all recently. Running nine ultra/marathons in the last three years - inevitably, people ask about the limp, and things get around - seems to give the impression of running abilities well beyond what I feel is reality. This knowledge of my having done some longer stuff actually embarasses me slightly. Not that the act itself is embarrassing. It's not. But the idea that I'm a particularly good runner... well, I'm not really comfortable with that, nor do I really agree with it. And I'm certainly not comfortable with using my slight ultra pedigree as evidence to that point.
In any case, specific to this instance: 5Ks aren't easy. Not for me. And not for anyone that gives a real effort. That is to say, racing them isn't easy. Racing anything is never easy.
And frankly, as mentioned above, racing always scares me a bit. Not the difficulty inherent to the task. That, I don't mind. It's the goddamn clock. To look at a clock, a flat stretch of concrete, and know that these things will not lie to you. They will take all your effort, and assign a cold value to it. This is where you stand. We don't care how hard to tried. This is what it's worth.
Waiting on my number.