Sunday, August 18, 2013

Better Than Nothing

Today was another psychologically hard day, and definitely not one of the proudest in my running journey.  I had a 15 miler on the schedule for this week, which I was completely fine and at peace with even after the parade of leg cramps from last week.  So, great right?  I was going to follow roughly the same plan/route from last week, since the location was good, and allowed me to space my tech food out pretty well.

In the ultimate example of "best laid plans", Tuesday Eric woke up and told me that he felt like complete crap.  Exhausted, drained, sore throat, hurting ears, sniffles, the works.  I knew immediately that I was going to get whatever he had.  My body has a weird cue that it gives me when I am going to get a cold, and it's that my teeth hurt.  During my long run last week, whenever I would bend down to stretch, I noticed my teeth ached horribly.  I had freaked out about it initially, but I felt fine for the rest of the weekend so I hadn't really worried about it much after that.

Sure enough, by the end of the day Wednesday I had a sore throat, stuffy sinuses and just felt an almost debilitating exhaustion.  I could barely hold my head up by the end of the day at work, and I think we even went to bed around 8:30 that night.  I was trying to stay positive and thought maybe I would feel better by the weekend, but my dreams were quickly dashed by Friday night. I was wringing my hands about my long run, and whether to knock it out Saturday, or give myself one more day to recover.  I decided to do the long run Sunday, but ultimately feel like that was a mistake.  Not only was I completely racked with guilt all day yesterday, but I physically felt better yesterday morning than any point of today.  I guess that's the cold gamble you take, but I am still so disappointed.

Today was a disaster.  I woke up feeling completely miserable, but determined to do my run.  I knew that 15 wasn't in the cards, but I was again determined to get out there and at least do 10 miles.  I wasn't sure how much I was going to be capable of doing, but I brought some tech food and my thermos with my electrolyte water.  I figured being over prepared was better than not having enough, especially since I thought maybe I would feel better once I got out and about.  I pulled my clothes on and drove out to my route, but was already starting to have doubts that 10 miles was going to happen, but thought I could at least do 7 miles.  My sinuses felt like bugs were crawling on the inside of them, my nose was still super stuffy, and my lungs were totally wonky.

Long story short, I didn't do 10 miles, 7 miles or even 5 miles.  I ran one mile and walked a very defeated 3 miles.  So, that's 4 miles.  I just don't even know how to feel.  Once I got out there the cold got the best of me, mostly with my breathing, but also with the extreme exhaustion that has come with it.  And of course, because this godforsaken summer is never going to end, the sun was beating down on me and the humidity was at about 85%, which was just compounding how awful I felt.  Especially once I got hot I knew I had to stop.

I cried the entire drive home, and for a good while after I got home.  I have had some low points in my life, but today was really one of the ones that shook me to the core.  I felt like a loser and a failure, which due to some other things kind of going on in the background of my life, was the very LAST thing I needed to feel like.  I needed something to be proud of and feel good about, such as running 15 miles or at least running a decent amount, so not being able to have that victory was a total blow to my confidence.  Eric being the amazing husband he is picked up the pieces when I got home.  I got a lecture along the lines of  "well YEAH you weren't able to run, you have an f'ing cold."  He did his best to encourage me, but I still feel completely lousy.

Hopefully next week is better.  I'm pretty tired of writing bummer posts.


  1. I think you need to remind yourself that it is a journey - there are setbacks. Even seasoned runners have off days, and your husband is right, running with a cold, ESPECIALLY with nasal and chest congestion, is near effing impossible!

    I'm going to share something that has helped me when training for long races. Find a schedule that seems manageable, and then try to follow it as best you can, but remember that you know yourself best. Feel like a long run when there are only 3-5 miles on the schedule for that day? Screw the schedule and run long! Then go short another day.

    Running is like a relationship in that you will fall in and out of love with it a lot over the course of your lifetime. However, if it means enough to you then you'll stick with it. Maybe you'll take a few weeks off, maybe less or more, but then you'll also have weeks where you'll finish a run and want to go right back out for another one.

    You got this. Just hang in there.

    1. Thanks Sarah, logically I knew it wasn't a good idea, I guess I am just afraid of missing those long runs. The marathon is just around the corner, so I need all the training I can get! I am definitely not in love with running right now, but I think that is 95% due to the weather. At least the marathon will be when the temps are normal again, I am really VERY done with the 85-90 degree nonsense!