My last post opened with the fact that although I had won one race in my time, it certainly didn’t happen on the regular.
And then I won another race. Oops.
I mean, not that it was an accident. I wanted to win. I tried to win. I would have been disappointed if I hadn’t won.
This feels uncomfortable to write though, and I’m not sure why. Maybe I’m worried that people will think I’m boasting. That people who know the race know that it’s a small field. That most other runners were off running marathons that day. That it was only a 5k. That half the runners I know could have beaten me had they entered. That it’s a race that promotes inclusivity and everyone taking part, so winning shouldn’t be important.
There’s a blog post in the making about the female competitive spirit so I won’t dwell on it too much here, but as a female I do feel – in certain situations – uncomfortable about being vocally competitive and I think this is playing its part here.
If I can touch on the actual race for a moment here – I’m definitely proud of how I ran it and I’m not ashamed to say that at all. I had a strategy courtesy of a wise owl and I stuck to it. I started steady, I gritted my teeth and I finished strong. The course was unfortunately about 100m short, so although my official time shows a stonking 40 second PB (!) of 23.05 chip time, an accurate finish time would probably have been slightly less impressive although I reckon still a PB.
So yes, I’m proud of how I ran. I ran sensibly and competitively, chasing down the girl in front of me (who was LOVELY by the way) and my training definitely seems to be paying off.
But why can’t I be proud of that podium spot? Every time I mention it I caveat it with “but it was a small field” so everyone knows that I’m not actually the kind of runner who wins races. Probably because I know that my time isn’t one that usually wins races. I don’t feel that that time deserves to win races. 20 min 5k runners, now that’s where it’s at. I’m not saying it’s a bad time – it’s one I’m proud of, but I can’t reconcile that with it being a winning time.
So that’s where I’m at. Feeling a bit meh with a hint of pride trying to bash its way in.
Any thoughts or pop psychology analysis welcome.