Monday, August 23, 2010

Chapter 2 page 120 - HMTU 45 all the way & gratitude

Temp = 78.5 degrees; can't remember any of the other weather stats - but it was far superior to the rest of the summer. In parts there was a nice breeze and it was still hot enough to make us sweat especially in the first half. Tonight's training was not about the weather . . . it was ALL about the distance!!!!!

For the official record - 13 miles in the books!!! All of it - every last step!!! It took us 3h30 minutes (I've never been physically active for that long before, ever!) I know that will get us very close to last at the F4F, but I also know . . . WE DID THAT . . . AND THAT'S OKAY WITH ME!!!! The reality of knowing that technically we NEVER have to go any further than we did tonight was joyous (a semi-dark cloud looms over me as I'm thinking "C" and I will do a 14 and a 15 mile run in prep for the November half). Additionally, knowing that we will probably never do the 13 miles as slowly as we did tonight was also motivating.

Let me start with one word "THANKS!" There is NO way to express the depth of my gratitude to BOTH of my training partners. You girls deserve a presidential medal for all you did to help me get through tonight (and these past 5 months)!!!! I never say it enough . . . especially at the moment it's happening (because I feel like I'm dying at the time you girls kick your awesomeness into high gear).

Why I'm grateful to "C":

1. Tonight . . . "C" joined us for the first 6.85 miles. There are no words to explain how fantastic it was to have her back again (totally missed you - don't leave us again!).

2. "C" allowed us to go 2:2 instead of 3:1 . . . . sincerely, THANK YOU!

3. Due to family obligations, "C" had planned to only run the first half our 13 miles with us; however, our route did not take us place a single place to get water (and for those of you who don't know . . . I'm a heavy consumer of the water during training!). "C" went back to her car, drove to the store, purchased bottled water for us with her own money, and drove our route to track us down to deliver us ice cold water. Tell me - is there a greater, more generous deed than that? NO!!! Two MILLION thank you's for the way above and beyond. It was shortly after this that we ran by "C's" oldest daughter "K" (the one with the cutie 4 legged daughter). Totally fantastic to see her - hope we can do a light walk/run together soon (she could totally crush me in speed and distance, so I'm hoping she would handicap the pace and distance a lil' for me). Great to see you "K"!!!!!!!

4. Even though I'm days slower than "C" is, she NEVER makes me feel badly about going slowly - in fact, she finds a way to make me feel like I'm a super star.

Why I'm grateful to "L":

1. "L" makes me feel like whatever pace I'm going, whatever interval we use, that it's ok. Even if I ask multiple times, "Is this pathetic?" (even if it indeed is) she always says, "NO! Who else do you know that went X number of miles today?" Thanks "L".

2. "L" has endless stories that make the time go by so much more smoothly. Even when I think I can't take another step - she's just going on with a story and I just keep going to see what happens in the end.

3. "L" dishes out both tough love and compassion (not sure it's in equal doses, but that's okay . . . I probably need WAY more tough love than compassion anyway!). Somehow she knows just what to say and when to say it. (see the story below for a graphic illustration of her gift)

4. "L" realizes this was a crazy idea, but joined me on the journey anyway . . . how selfless is that!!!!

Here's tonight's "drama". The first 8 miles was not really that difficult (shocking, I know). At about the 8.5 mile mark I think I came close to hitting the wall. We slowed down, changed intervals, drank some water, ate some bloks, and vented about our fatigue. I begged "L" to let me sit on one of the beautiful park benches along our path. "L" firmly denied this request. I explained how badly I NEEDED to sit . . . but my pleading fell on deaf ears. I then reminded "L" that on all of our other long runs we've taken 3-5 stops that were anywhere from 1-5 minutes (usually only 1-2 minutes, but nature does call from time to time). We continued on and I passed another bench and in my delusion said aloud, "No Mr. Bench, we can't be friends tonight!" We get to the 10.5 mile mark and I told "L", "I can't go another step! I'm done." Then I proceeded to fall to my knees and rested on all four's in the mud of the rural road's ditch. Folks, it wasn't pretty - butt up in the air facing the road (thankfully, no traffic). I said, "I just need a minute." I honestly don't remember making the decision to stop, but I know at the moment when I was bent over like a dog, I wasn't going to be able to take another step. "L" was silently thinking these thoughts: what if she doesn't get up?, what am I going to do? how am I going to get help since we were 1/4 of a mile from the nearest house?, now what?, she will surely get up, won't she? After exactly 2 minutes, I got up and we continued on probably better than we had been going for the half mile or so before my "union mandated break". After I got up, or maybe while I was on the ground, she said, "I was thinking about what you said, and yeah, I guess I had forgotten about all those breaks. They do really make a difference. I see that now." Welcome to the light "L" (nothing but love, we can laugh about it now).

Positive notes:
1. The first 12 miles tonight was far easier than last week's 12 miles.
2. The last mile tonight was not nearly as painful as last week's last mile.
3. My blisters are bad, but maybe not as bad as last week.
4. My right knee didn't hurt at all.
5. My shins are completely a non-issue (thankfully!)
6. "L"'s hip wasn't terribly sore (at least not up until the 9 mile mark when we stopped talking about it and I focused more on my need to STOP & REST!)
7. It's over!
8. Next week is only (HA! "only") 10 miles and it is in the form of the Parlor City Trot Race Event.

What hurts:
1. EVERYTHING! My feet feel like broken glass (as does "L's"). My who-ha was really painful during the last 5 miles (give or take a mile) and is killing me now. My plantar fasciitis is a real pain (pun intended). My lower back was bothersome during the last 5 miles. And a brand new pain . . . inner thigh. Seriously! Who's inner thigh starts hurting? MINE, tonight! UGGGG! But I know that things will get to feeling better tomorrow or Wednesday and this will be a faded nightmare of the past (I hope).

Do you remember your first 13 mile run? How did it go?


  1. Great job! Heading out for my long run in a bit.

  2. Great job on the long run and your continued improvement! You're doing awesome.

    My first 13-mile run was the Flying Pig Half-Marathon, and I thought I was going to die after mile 10. Seriously wanted to quit. However, the second try at 13 miles (two months later) was much better.

  3. You had never gone 13 miles prior to a race? Wow! You're so brave! SOOOO happy to hear the second time going 13 was better (whew!). Thanks for your comments - I love to get them.

  4. I am so proud of you guys! I wish I could have joined you in the rest of the run, but duty called. You girls are definately ready for the 10 mile Parlor City and the 13.1 F4F. Way to go! You did it!