This past Sunday, I hosted a free group run for running buddies and former couch to 5k participants. We expected about 20+ runners on Sunday morning. But the icky forecast caused me to receive a lot of texts and emails early Sunday morning, from runners cancelling. I keep hoping that spring will be here soon - especially when planning these events. But, the weather just doesn't seem to want to cooperate. I didn't pay too much attention to the forecast before we ventured out to the trailhead. If I know it was supposed to be blowing snow, I probably wouldn't have been so unopinionated about my twenty miler that morning. It was also going to be The Boyfriend's first twenty mile training. So, it's especially just as well that he didn't know what was waiting for us either. We ended up meeting about ten folks for a group run. Everyone was different paces and running different distances. But, it was nice to hold eachother accountable and show up and commit to our training - whatever level. The loop is five miles. Some were running a half-loop; some one loop; some two loops and The Boyfriend and I were running four loops. Our friend was also running to meet us half way and finish the run with us.
We headed back up the biggest hill on the beautiful path. The Boyfriend tried walking it, while I ran ahead. Again, I was worried I wouldn't be able to get going again if I stopped. I got to the top, conquered the hill - and then I slipped on the same patch of ice we had been trying to avoid all morning. It was now covered in snow and more slippery than ever. I slipped, I fell on my lower back, and then I hit my head on the snow-covered 1/2 inch of ice.
I just layed there, not moving for moments - which seemed like minutes. The skies were grey and the snow was falling on my face. My handheld water bottle was busted. I must've used it to break my fall.
I immediately thought, what am I going to do if I'm hurt? I didn't have a phone on me. I thought of the other people running with us - and all winter long in my groups. I thought of them and was immediately thankful that this didn't happen to any of them on those cold, dark, icy nights. I would've felt terrible.
I layed there still, not knowing if I could move. I was stunned. In Shock. Then, I rolled over onto my belly. I had my arms in a push-up-like position and tilted my head and could see The Boyfriend running again, up the hill to see me. I was happy to be moving and happy to see him.
I layed my head down in the snow and tears started rolling down my face. I didn't speak. He came up close to me, layed his face next to mine in the snow and kept asking me if I was ok. I managed to say that I was fine. His eyes were filling up with tears, too. (He later stated that he was getting emotional - just at the thought of having to carry me over his shoulder for the two miles to the trailhead.) I layed there for a bit, just trying to figure out what happened and trying to get my barings. I stood up and looked at the sky, looked at my watch and grabbed my broken water bottle. We still had over two miles to go to the trailhead. I decided I was ok to run and was going to finish this.