Just a few more miles, you tell yourself. You can do it.
How did you get here? It was such a beautiful day. Miles flying by, the sun setting over the mountains. That feeling you could do this forever. Running on autopilot as the world rolls by.
You start feeling a little bit off. Nothing major, just a foreboding that something isn’t quite right. You go through the mental checklist you’ve done so many times. You’ve been fueling regularly. Plenty of liquids. It’s not too hot out, so you’re not overheating. Everything feels OK. But something isn’t right. Still, you’re almost there. Just a few miles away.
You think back to a week ago. You did the same course with no problems. You’ve had a lot of rest since. This isn’t a big deal. You can do this. Just a few more miles.
You envision the finish line just a few miles ahead. A long home stretch, a left turn, another left, and you’re there. But things are getting worse. The warning light just went off in your head. You’re officially in trouble.
You dig into the book of tricks. Slow down a little. Take it easy. Stop everything not necessary to moving forward. Relentless forward motion. Keep moving. Just a few more miles. You can do it.
But it’s not working. You start to wobble a bit, then you slow down drastically. Everything is shutting down. JUST A FEW MORE MILES, DAMMIT. You limp along slowly as others pass you by. Running turns to crawling. You go as far as you possibly can, and then … all you can do is stop.
You sit on the curb and watch the others go by. So fast, so easy. That was you earlier. Why isn’t it you now? Who knows. Some days just aren’t your day. You sit quietly in the dark.
DNF. You hate those letters. But it happens. The important thing is that you tried.
The guy who is driving you calls AAA. You wait for the sag wagon to take you home.
Once there, you go to sleep and dream of shiny new alternators and finish lines. Just a few more miles. You can do it …