Monday, August 5, 2019

My First DNS

If you follow my running calendar closely (although, don't worry if you don't, I don't even think the hubby can keep up-to-date on all of my races ;)), you may know that I had a race on the calendar this past weekend - the Balboa Park 8-Miler.

And, if you follow me on social media (you can find me at @CarleeMcDot on all platforms), you probably saw ZERO mention of said race... at least not in the last week... And that's because I did something I have never done before...

There are many acronyms in the running world, so if you aren't familiar with them all, have no fear, I'm here to help! For those of you who don't know these three letters, let me explain. DNS stands for did not start. Yep, although I signed up for this race months ago, I had to do something I'd never done before and pull the plug before I even crossed the start line.

If you read my recap of the San Francisco Ultra, you know I've been dealing with a pretty bad "fibro flare" recently and the pain has not subsided in the least. {REMINDER: The pain I have is NOT due to an injury. I do not encourage or support running injured! Listen to your body (and your doctor) because no event, finish line or run is worth risking your health.}

At this point in the race, Brian was using the potty so I sat down on a curb and was
trying not to break down (for the ump-teenth time)... 

In the back of my mind I kept hoping and praying that I could get a handle on the pain and make it to the race, but by mid-week I knew it wasn't a possibility. Sure, I could run (painfully) or walk the event, but I needed to weigh the pros and cons.

Thankfully the race company who manages the event, San Diego Running Co, is AMAZEBALLS and allowed the hubby and I to defer our entries to the 2020 event without having to pay any type of penalty fee. You better believe we plan on being there next year and as soon as the date is released it will be penciled in the calendar.

So, why is a DNS such a big deal?! Well, maybe it's not. Maybe runners make it into a bigger deal than it should be. Shoot, maybe not all runners make it into a big deal but somehow I do did. I guess I am used to seeing the "motivational" images that say things like "DFL (Dead 'Freaking' Last) > DNF (Did Not Finish) > DNS (Did Not Start)" and internalized that to mean not making it to the start line is somehow the biggest failure of all. But, you know what?! Although I was disappointed in myself for a hot minute (okay, maybe it was more like a day and a half if I'm being real with myself {and with you}), I have to say I'm also pretty proud of myself because in the end I was honoring my body and doing what's best for me - no matter how hard it may seem. I could've laid out a flat runner, muscled my way through 8 miles and collected my bling at the finish line, but I also know that no matter if I cross the finish line (or even the starting line) of another race that I AM ENOUGH. That I AM A RUNNER. That I CAN DO HARD THINGS. That I AM PRETTY FREAKIN' AWESOME! {PS Thanks to my recent read of The Happy Runner for reinforcing those importante and much needed reminders!}

Maybe not so motivational for those of us who have to DNS

Well, I might not have started my race this past weekend, but that doesn't mean the trend will continue (or at least I pray it doesn't). In fact, I decided to get right back on the pony and sign up for another race, the Diablo Trail Marathon in a few weeks. I think it'll be great training for when the hubby and I tackle climbing Mt. Whitney at the beginning of September, seeing as the course gains over 6,700 feet of elevation. Here's to hoping my fibro flare has subsided by then.

Have you ever registered for an event and then not started it?


Ben and Jack's Momma said...

Carlee, you are a rockstar for all that you have accomplished! Hoping your pain subsides soon!

Virjinia @ With Purpose and Kindness said...

It sucks a lot but I've been there too! I had to drop out of a race alltogether because of injury. I went to support my friends but I was plenty sad to see them crossing the finish line without them. Hoping you feel better soon and you'll be strong in no time!

San said...

I know it's a tough decision to make, but it's also smart. I hope you do feel better soon.