I run. I’m not great at it. Mostly I love the runner’s high.
I decided to run my first 10K on Sunday, and to drag my friend who’s sort-of-but-not-really into running with me. I spent a couple months nudging my training focus from 5K to 10K, and persuading my reluctant friend to actually show up (and run the simultaneous 5K) so we could be terrible together.
Of course I woke up at 5am, hours before the race, with a vice-gripping charley horse in my left calf. I freaked. My only experience in the spontaneous-leg-cramp department was limited to one during a run, once, some years ago, that kept me from running for a week (and turned out to be a precursor to a more serious tendon injury that sidelined me for two months).
Panic-stricken and groggy, as soon as the main pain passed, I texted my buddy to give him a heads-up that I might have to drop the race. It seemed vitally important to tell him. (In retrospect, yeah, okay, I was half asleep, it made sense at the time.)
Of course I texted the wrong person at 5am, and didn’t mention “race” or “running” anywhere, so this was followed by a brief explanation of why I’d expect this wrong person to give a fuck about the state of my left calf before the ass-crack of dawn.
Epilogue to this non-story: The race itself went fine— couple thousand people, biggest race I’ve ever done— with no other excitement. Lots of volunteers, very well organized, very few opportunities for anything to go wrong. Because I didn’t have a 10K time, and because my buddy didn’t have a 5K time, it was automatically a PR for both of us, wahoo.