I hope today was a rare experience day as I approach the teen mile markers and have past the single digits. I now find myself in the Tweens. In efforts to try to stay positive I will list the good things that happened, but in efforts to be honest I will also list today's downfalls but I definitely am hoping days like today are not what is in store for me from here until December.
My Hal Higdon chart told me I needed to run 12 miles today. After last week's breeze of a long run and since I hadn't done much this week I wanted to push myself to running a half marathon distance today. 13.1 miles. After all, what's another 1.1 mile? Keeping in mind that 12 miles is already a 5 mile jump form last week and 2 miles more than I have ever done before.
Also after watch Spirit of the Marathon on Netflix yesterday (HIGHLY recommended for anyone!) and watching these people of all levels in their training and completing of the Chicago marathon, I was determined I would never have another training where I would leave anything on the table. I would push myself and see what this body can do. Well lets just say my mind wanted to do more than my body wanted to. People will say it's mind over matter... I'm not so sure I believe that after today.
This morning my phone went off at 6:25 with my friend calling to verify our meeting point at 6:30... The problem was I was still in bed. Lights went on, I ran into Erik's room to get him up, thankfully we had our clothes all laid out already. Oatmeal went into the microwave while I tied my shoes and we went out the door... oops, turned around to get all our hydration aids from the freezer and bottles of water. And off we went 15 minutes after that call. We had about a 20 minute drive to our starting point and I definitely think our stretching was a bit rushed as the sun was already coming out and I feared the afternoon heat.
I decided to start off with a slow paced job... about a 13.5/14 pace. I lagged behind my friends and Erik but I just kept my own speed and managed to continue to jog for about 20 minutes which was for more than a mile. This was a great way to start out. I walked for a bit and then alternated running and walking for the first few miles. In the beginning I was suffering some pains in my left ankle but by about mile 5 the pain went away.
Mile 6 is about where I started shutting down mentally. The path I was on wasn't a great one and there was some off roading and while most of it was treed, as the sun came out and started beating down on the sidewalk the sweat began just pouring off me. Erik and I alternated water and gatorade and when I felt myself really dragging I had some energy water to boost me but it didn't work.
Around mile 7 or so my friend hurt his knee and had to go back. Erik and I kept going but at 8.14 miles I found myself back at my car for more water and really didn't want to finish. My friends encouraged me to not try to over do the plan and go 13.1 but to complete the 12 I was actually supposed to do today. So we took a bit of a break and then set out again. Now at 10am it was very hot. I mean VERY HOT. I could have cooked eggs on the sidewalk for the people driving by in their cars looking at us like we were idiots for running in this weather. By now I was NOT running. Not after 8.5 I don't think anyway. AND I was walking at a much slower speed than I should have been. My average pace was slipping away from me. Around mile 10 my right metatarsal (yup I learned something I science) was throbbing.
I never got my second wind that I usually get at some point. Around mile 10 I also noticed I was no longer sweating profusely. Not sure if this was due to dehydration, even though I was drinking a LOT, or maybe I was just not pushing myself to sweating limits. I kept us repeating the same section of path over and over as it was shaded. At times I felt like a vampire trying to avoid those patches where harsh sunlight would beat down on us.
The last couple miles were painful. Everything but my knees (woo hoo) hurt and hurt a lot. Again I wanted to quit. In the back of my head I kept thinking... when I get to 12, I'll get push myself to do that last mile but I couldn't. I was done. My body was rejecting me and I was really hating the start to my day. Whatever the accomplishment, it came as a huge price today. Thankfully I still have 2.5 more months to train but I'm also still not even halfway to the ultimate distance.
Our run ended. I wasn't happy I did it. I wasn't happy I was done. I was really only happy that my legs were not moving anymore. I did a lot of post running stretching, even at home. Meanwhile Erik went and rode his bike. My muscles were really seizing on me and my feet are really sore.
I guess running and training is different for everyone. For me, this just might kill me.