HOLEY MOLEY!!! Where does the time go? The Denver Gorilla Run seemed so far off back when I registered. And, here it is, less than a week away.
When I decided to run this 5K, I hoped I’d be able to actually run the full race. I didn’t even think about how it would be to run in a gorilla suit, really. Now, it is all I think about! You see, Colorado weather can be quite the crazy thing. So, an end of October race in an ape suit didn’t seem like a bad idea considering Halloween sometimes requires kids to wear snowsuits. Well, so far this month, I’ve still been running in shorts and t-shirt, or even a tank-top. Even in those clothes, I’m sweating my tuchus off! I never thought I’d be hoping for cold and snow sooner rather than later. How will I possibly keep from passing out from my own heat trapped in the suit?
Then, there is my rookie mistake of sacrificing my runs for sitting on the couch or taking naps. I was just getting into a 5K groove and really pumping myself up to go further. Then I slacked off and getting to 5K after a day of work feels like taking on an extra shift. I really have to push myself hard. But, race or no race, I have to do this. I had a rough weekend at work and getting out for a run was a big help to blow-off some steam, even if I didn’t make it the full 5K. If my week keeps up like this, though, I’ll be passing my previous distance record.
This weekend will be my racing debut. It’ll also be an attempt to face my anxiety about crowds and racing without a friend. If all goes well, I’ll get to cross a couple of things off my list of fears. There are worse things than going ape s— in an ape suit, right?
I’m not sure what my ideal racing conditions are. I’ve never done it before. Getting right out of bed and hitting the road first thing in the morning would probably be on the list. It would seem that running sans an ape suit would also be ideal. Those aren’t options for my first time, so I’ll have to make the best of it. So, I have to remind myself, going in, that this is for fun. I’m doing this to kick-off another phase of my running life.
Chances are, I won’t make it straight through without pausing at one point, or two, or three. I know how hot it can get in the costume. Maybe I’ll end-up at the finish line as a human-headed gorilla holding a gorilla head. Actually, after literally just putting the mask on, I think I can guarantee that being the case. Keeping these things in mind is important so that I don’t feel like a loser if it takes me longer in the race than it does around my neighborhood. I also will try not to think about the 35 week pregnant woman in my age group coming in second place with a 23:51. ;-) I know I won’t be near that and that’s okay.
Just finishing is what I need to focus on between now and the finish line. My mantra shall be, “Make it to the finish line! You can do it!”…If I were a drinker, I’d probably have a mantra of “Make it to the free beer!”
Got any tips for a virgin racer? Have you ever raced in an animal suit? (I can’t believe I just wrote that!)