I was supposed to race this past Sunday. I had a local 5k on the menu, one run by a friend and a race that is usually a pretty pleasant event. Beer, Italian ices, and hot dogs at the finish. Small, right down the street. Everything that would have made this an easy race to enjoy.

Except I chose to DNS. Did. Not. Start. Heck, did not even get out of bed. Ugh.


This was my first DNS. The night prior, I was at my parents house dog sitting for this cutie pie.

Everything was going swimmingly until about 7pm, when my stomach started acting up. It is nothing new for me to have stomach problems, especially in the evening. I started a new medication a few months ago, and actually, it has improved my lifestyle by a good 60-70% in terms of bathroom visits. But there are still bad nights. This was one of them. I generally know that even on a bad night, I’ll wake up and the next morning will be manageable.

My stomach kept me up until nearly midnight, which for an early-to-bed girl like myself, that is super late. Okay, we’ll see how this goes.

5am my stomach woke me back up with bad gas pains this time. At that point, I mentally gave up. I was still tired, the heat on Sunday was predicted to be a scorcher (minimal shade on this course, as well), and I had no friends meeting up with me at this race. Zero incentive to push through.

So, for the first time in all the years I’ve been racing, I didn’t push through.

I shut off my alarm.

And later got angry at myself for it. And in the safety of my parents’ home, on their treadmill, steps away from the bathroom (thankfully), I ran 3.1 miles to make up for the race.


I still feel guilty (to myself, I guess?) that I didn’t show up. I have had stomach problems for years, and pride myself on not letting them interrupt my plans TOO much. A training run moved to the next day, sure, that happens all the time. A night spent in pain on the couch? Yep, that happens. But RACES?! I never miss races. Could I have probably made it? Yes. But I let myself give up on this one.

Life has been kind of crazy lately, with apartment hunting (PS – finally found a place, more on that later), starting to pack, dealing mentally/emotionally with the breakup of a nearly 6 year relationship, and solidifying all of the “this is really happening” moving out stuff. Mentally, physically, a little bit exhausting. However, no matter what, the DNS didn’t sit well with me.


Have you ever bailed on a race? How did you get over it mentally?


6 thoughts on “The DNS

  1. Gotta tell ya, if I was ill the night before a race and still was feeling “iffy” the morning of, I would have no hesitation with the DNS. You could’ve been caught out on the course, had to go to the portable, and then your race results would’ve said 90 minutes for a 5K!! How horrifying would that have been?!! Or, or worse yet… you could’ve been stuck on the course with NO portables, and then what would you have done had an issue come up??? I think you made the right decision, so now you need to forgive yourself. 😀


    • Thanks. I’m working on letting it go, and writing this probably helped a little. This was a race i knew had no portos, so that was DEFINITELY a factor too… might have had to knock on some doors 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, 2 summers ago I DNS for the first time with a 5k. It was 45 min from home, too. And i was embarrassed that i had brought my husband and son along for the debacle. Barely made it to a porto potty and multiple bouts at a gas station bathroom on the way home. And the pain! That was when i decided to investigate my GI problems. Seeing a new doctor tomorrow and may have to start medication. My new thing is anxiety related to “what if it happens when i sign up for another race? or “what if it happens when i’m on vacation or on a road trip with no bathroom?” These are things i’m going to discuss with the MD tomorrow.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I definitely know that anxiety!!!! I wish you all the luck at your appointment tomorrow!! Finding the right GI doctor that will work with you and your life, needs, and symptoms is so important to trying to keep sane!!


  3. You know, runners always preach “you have to listen to your body”… and that’s exactly what you did. No shame there. It happens. Sad that it happened on race day, but you did the right thing (and even made up for the mileage. High five!)

    Liked by 1 person

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