This week just felt very real. Another insane week at work meant I was pretty much just running whenever I could. Plus being officially over the hump of 13.1 miles was both inspiring and daunting. The mid week runs got longer, and it just really felt like I was training for a marathon, which I guess I am.
Monday was such a brutal day at work. I barely had a chance to eat lunch, and I came home wanting nothing more than to eat and fall asleep. I usually feel this way Monday’s so I don’t typically like to run, but the rescheduling of our group happy hour meant I needed to. So, I did a dark and spooky 4 miler.
Actually, there are some positives to running in the dark. Obviously, it’s dangerous in that you can’t see creepers lurking and cars can’t really see you, so I prefer to run while its light out. But it does have its advantages. The dark forces me to focus on the road right in front of me which keeps me from getting distracted by my own racing mind. It’s also nice to feel like I’m all alone after a day surrounded by people and noise. I also think it makes my eyes feel better after 9 hours of staring at a computer screen inches from my face. Using my distance vision in the dark seems like an eye massage.
Chris went grocery shopping and made dinner while I was out so it was basically waiting for me when I got out of the shower which felt like royal treatment.
Tuesday was tough. I didn’t leave for the gym until 7:30, so between my late start and feeling a little gross from that morning’s flu shot, I opted to finish my second 4 miler instead of my 8 miler. I knew I’d regret it come Thursday, but I just didn’t see 8 happening.
It was a good 4 miles. I wore my new shoes and insoles with only minimal soreness, so I think I’m ready to transition to them full time.
Wednesday was a work team building volleyball game turned happy hour by the rain. Needless to say this was a rest day.
On Thursday, I spent pretty much the whole day thinking about the run. I mean, 8 miles is a long run on a week night. I definitely “carbed up” by eating a bagel, a donut and basically a plate of rice and sweet potatoes for lunch. Nutrition (or lack thereof) obviously being a topic for another day.
I try not to give myself any downtime between work and the gym when I have a run I don’t really want to do. So, I just kept moving until I was on the treadmill. If I sit down, it’s over. I walked home from the train, took the dog for a walk, changed right into my gym clothes and left.
The miles were actually ok. I wore my sneakers and insoles again and felt good for the first time. I broke the run up into a 5 and a 3 since I had to reset the treadmill. For both legs, I walked the first .10 then started running slowly (5.2) and picked it up towards the end (6.0). It worked well, and the run was over before I knew it.
Unfortunately, the rest of the night wasn’t a blast. By the time I cooked dinner and showered, it was pretty late, and I was starving (almost as if donuts don’t have staying power…). I don’t know if it was the waiting or the resulting inhalation of food, but I spent the rest of the night curled in the fetal position waiting for rolling waves of nausea to pass. Running is so glamorous.
Friday was a glorious rest day. I foam rolled and stretched for about an hour while watching Four Weddings and drinking wine. Perfect.
Saturday I had an event with my book club in the early afternoon, so I moved my long run to Sunday. I slept in and got some errands done and said goodbye to my mom and sister who are moving to North Carolina. We met up for BBQ and wine. I stayed out a little too late and had a hard time winding down that night.
Sunday was the first day this year that’s really felt like fall. I checked the weather before I went to bed Sunday and decided I should sleep in since it would be just about 40 degrees at my usual 7am start time. I woke up around 8:30 Sunday and procrastinated until I decided it was probably warmer outside than in the house #oldhouseproblems. I left around 9:30, and it actually was warmer outside, but not by much.
This run was TOUGH. My stomach was kind of all over the place from the BBQ. I was so nervous about the 16 miles. I was wearing my new shoes which are still not exactly comfortable.
Mostly, pacing was the issue though. The chilly temperature really threw me off, and my first 10 miles kept coming in faster than they should have. I felt extra energized without the heat to take me down a notch. Pacing is always difficult for me. The me of the first half has a difficult time remember what the me of the second half usually feels like, so I just convince myself I can maintain a fast pace the whole time.
Around that 11th mile, I slowed way down. I stopped to refill my water bottle, and that was the beginning of many stops. I only fully stopped once, but I probably walked for a minute or two every other mile between 11 and 16. I found the last burst of energy I had and sped through the last mile, but this run was a mental and physical struggle.
The rest of the day was not easy either. Usually, I can sort of function until bed time, but I really probably should have gone to bed. Unfortunately, I had a million errands left to run, so I slogged through them before finally collapsing on the couch around 7. By that point, I had a headache and a stomach ache that would not quit. I finally called uncle around 9:30 and went to bed. Some days are just harder than others.
M- 4 miles
Tu- 4 miles
Th- 8 miles
F- stretched and foam rolled
Su- 16 miles (!!)
Total miles: 32
Total so far: 225.1
This whole plan really, but this week especially have been a mental exercise between pushing myself to do my best and not being so tough on myself. On the one hand, I’m glad I was able to get all my weeknight runs in despite long hours at the office and post work festivities. On the other hand, I did zero strength training, and I know the timeframe I have for that is shrinking. It’s a balancing act, and this is my hobby not my job. My family is my first priority, and running is a little farther down the list. Remind myself of this definitely helps.