This Saturday marks my first race "post Meredith." Two years ago I ran my first race-the Susan G. Komen-at Rivertown. As I get back into running, I think it is fitting that I am running the same race again. Running has been a stretching/raising the bar experience for me. I really don't enjoy running. I love the high I am on when I am done. And I really like racing. I'm not the fastest runner ever.(that is a putting it mildly) But racing is amazing. You feel part of a community as you are generally racing for a cause. It is often intimidating-seeing all these runners in professional racing duds and wondering if you are way out of your league, and will come in last. I remember being at the Komen race, and lining up according to your pace. There was the 6 minute milers, 7 minutes, 8 minutes, 9 minutes...and I'm looking for the 10 minute pacers. Not anywhere to be found. I thought, "I'm going to be last, I'm going to be last." And yet I wasn't. And I discovered I could go a whole lot faster than I thought. All those early morning runs paid off. I was hooked. I ran several more races in the next year-5ks, 10ks, and my personal high and favorite-the half marathon. I was at my peak. It was beautiful running through Holland. I did better than I thought I would. It was great. An amazing experience. And then I got pregnant...and hardly ran at all for 10 months. I was determined to run a race this weekend though, so I started training again in July. There were bumps to overcome, like a hip out of joint from baby. And nursing a newborn, and trying to get a schedule that works for both of us. And extra weight. Let me tell you, a little extra weight goes a long way-toward making your run harder. Everything just didn't pop back the way I hoped it would. Hills were hard, muscles needed reminding, breathing needed regulated. So here I am, at my goal race time, and I don't feel ready. Will I truly be last this time? Will I be able to run most of it? I know I can finish, but how well?