Monday, September 30, 2013

All Bad Things...

Oh vey...first of all, I have been awake since midnight and it is now almost 5 am, so please forgive any misspellings or oddness.  ;)  Not sure what is going on except probably a bad combination of too much sugar, anxiety and insomnia!

I just thought that I'd take the time and write a quick post, none of which will really be running related, but I don't like letting too much time pass between posts.  I had a pretty lovely weekend, mainly because it didn't contain a double digit mile run.  Eric's birthday is on Tuesday but he's got to go on a dumb business trip and won't be able to celebrate his birthday on the actual day, so he got a birthday weekend.  Friday night I made his favorite pizza (sweet potato with pancetta and goat cheese) and we just hung out.

Saturday was a fairly lazy day, followed by a really excellent dinner at Beast, which is this super amazing restaurant in Portland.  It was our second time there, and it definitely didn't disappoint.  The chef, Naomi Pomeroy, is nothing short of a genius!  It's sort of a supper club type deal where you sit in communal seating and are served a prefixe menu.  You do not know what you're going to get before you show up, and it's actually pretty exciting to relinquish that control, although it would be your worst nightmare if you are a picky eater.  I have no such qualms!

This was our menu for the evening.  Everything was super delicious, but the sea scallop was by far my favorite part.


As I mentioned, the seating at Beast is communal, so it's like being at a dinner party with strangers, which can be super awesome or super weird depending on who is seated next to you.  Both times we've been fairly lucky and have been next to basically cool people, however we had some major douches at the other end of the table, with one super douchey guy in particular.  He and his wife (who were apparently from out of town) were so pretentious and were super loud about all the expensive dinners they've eaten, their European jaunts, this that and the other wine they've had.  The guy complained and found fault with every single dish on the menu, mostly saying that everything was "too salty".  They also apparently went to my favorite ice cream shop in the whole world, Salt and Straw at some point during their visit here.  According to the guy, he'd gotten the strawberry balsamic ice cream, and with a wrinkled nose said, "The strawberry in it tasted TOO much like strawberry."  Um, pardon my French but what the fuck does that mean, lol.

Look, I love food.  I love to cook, and I really appreciate fine dining.  Portland has some of the best restaurants I've been to.  I am also the type of person who can happily make a meal of Cheez-its and a couple spoonfuls Nutella, so I don't get too uppity about the whole food thing.  I really hate when people are so snobby and joyless that they say things like strawberry ice cream tastes too much like strawberry.  The couple brought an oldie but goodie SNL skit to mind...Lord and Lady Douchebag!  I should have pulled a Garrett Morris and "announced" the couple when they came to the table:


Sunday was a "big" day because it was the Breaking Bad finale, and we were having a couple of our friends over to watch it with us.  I definitely was sad and nervous for the finale, I am totally obsessed with the show!  I even had cookies made for our party.  If you aren't familiar with the show, they will probably just look weird to you, but I was pretty pleased with these.:



I personally loved the finale and thought it was the perfect ending.  I won't spoil it if you haven't seen it yet, but it ended exactly the way I wanted it to.  Kind of sucks, I don't have a good show to watch until Game of Thrones comes back!

As usual, I'll leave off with a picture of Molly, who was being a complete disobedient ass this weekend.  She was totally PO'd that my friends had taken over "her" section of the couch and she (horror of horrors) was regulated to the $40 cushy dog bed on the floor.  I keep telling her that she's lucky that she's not one of those sad, abused dogs in the Sarah what-her-face commercial that's like 15 minutes long where they play "Arms of the Angel".  As you can see, Molly is not bothered by any of that.


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

First Official "Ask The Blogger"

Since I am in taper mode I am not going to have much exciting running content to discuss this weekend, so I thought it would be fun to do a reader driven post called "Ask The Blogger" where I answer reader submitted questions.  You can ask me just about anything within reason, and it doesn't have to be running related.  Obviously if it's too personal of a question (what street I live on, where do I work) I will politely decline answering it.  So rack your brains and ask me some good stuff!

Here are the following ways you can submit a question:

1.  Post your question in the comments section of this post
2.  Ask the question on my Runs To Get Waisted Facebook page
3.  If you're a shy lurker, you can email me at runstogetwaisted@gmail.com

Depending on how many questions are submitted (hopefully more than two), you can look for the reader post within the next week or so.  Now, go forth, ask questions! 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Two More Weeks

Sunday was the biggest of big training days and my final big training run, a whopping 20 miles, and I apologize for not writing my recap yesterday.  But as you can imagine, I desperately needed to stretch out and rest after my run, so I figured you guys wouldn't mind waiting too much!

Before I get into all of that mess, I would like to take a moment to thank one of my blog readers and a self described lurker.  Even though I have the donation widget at the top of my page, I certainly never thought or expected that I would have a reader donate to my LLS fundraising goal for the Nike Women's Half.  The fact that anyone reads this blog besides my family and a handful of friends is amazing to me, and it is certainly reward enough.  For you guys to take the time to read about my crazy life, my complaining and my half assed training blows my mind already, so I was touched to see someone donated to me.  I am not sure which one of you did it, but thank you, thank you!!

So back to the business of recapping.  Sunday marked 2 weeks until my marathon, which is a relief and terrifying at the same time.  I am so exhausted with the whole process that getting it over with will be a weight off of my shoulders.  I will be completely honest, I woke up on Sunday with a lot of resentment because I am a giant, lazy baby.  I resented that I couldn't sleep late.  I resented that I was having to choke down a lackluster Cliff bar breakfast instead of the giant stack of pancakes I wanted to.  I resented that I was going to miss tons of football.  I resented that I hurt constantly, and I do mean constantly.  I dragged around until about 7:30, when I finally pulled all of my running clothes on and started packing my stuff up.

I decided rather spontaneously that I was going to run in a nicer area of town instead of by my house.  For one, it's safer both on a people and a traffic level, and it's quieter.  Last week's episode with those two snarling dogs really kind of put me on edge, and I just couldn't really go there considering I had enough crap mentally going on as it was.  The last thing I need is some asshat thug's pitbull to break through a fence and bite me.  Anyway, I needed a change of scenery and figured it would be good to shake things up.

I ended up doing five 4 mile loops, and things started out pretty rough.  Since I didn't start out the run in a good mental space, the first loop was absolute torture.  I actually texted Eric and told him I wanted to quit so bad.  I felt like I couldn't breathe, even though I knew that was all in my head, and I felt like I didn't have a smidge of energy.  Of course Eric texted me back and was like, just do your best, go as far as you can.  I started out the second loop and was trying super hard to find a reason to quit, but I had told everyone and their dad pretty much that I was doing this run.  Even my parents texted me that morning and told me good luck.  All of my friends knew.  You guys of course knew.  I was like, how lame would I look if I did some sissy 8 mile run when I was supposed to do 20?  Moreover, how could I go into this marathon without completing a 20 mile run?  Even then I was like, I could lie and say my foot felt so bad that I had to stop.  Which, that's not really a lie that my foot hurts, but I always manage to power through it.  Then I remembered my kind blog lurker who donated to my LLS fund, and was like, some stranger cared enough to donate to me based on me running.  How could I wuss out and lie on top of it?  So I kept going.

Things got better after that.  After every loop I stopped at my car and had some tech food and Nuun from my thermos.  And by the way, I forgot to mention the most important part of my run, which is that for the first 16 miles I had PERFECT weather.  It was about 57, the wind was insane, and it was completely cloudy.  It was like having my own personal wind machine blowing on me and cooling me off the whole time.  Of course the bad thing is that it made me more sad I wasn't snuggled on my couch watching football!  :P

On my second to last loop I had a crazy thing happen, which is that I had the fastest splits of my entire run.  There were points I was sprinting (or what this fat girl considers a sprint) and running at 8:45 - 9:30 pacing.  It definitely was a boost to my confidence that my legs had a decent amount of kick in miles 13-16, and even into mile 17 for that matter.  Unfortunately that was about where the kick ended.  The last loop was pretty brutal, not only because I was in a lot of pain, but because it started raining hard core.  I don't mind running in the rain, but after a point it is like water torture.  I became resentful again.  I was cold, wet, hungry, and grouchier than ever about missing the Saints game and the start of the Bills game.  My hips hurt, my calves were starting to protest, and my foot hurt.  I tried my best to still jog during my last mile, but my legs just didn't have it in them anymore.  I have never heard a sweeter sound than my Garmin beeping when I hit 20 miles.  The angels sang.  Slash played a guitar solo off in the distance.  An opera singer hit her finest note.  A Pegasus flapped its wings.  I'm pretty sure all of that happened, that or I was so hungry that I was delusional.



My time was interesting and I actually feel positive about it..  I did some figuring, and I feel like I could do the marathon in 6 hours, or worst case, 6.5 hours.  I feel like I will gain speed on marathon day due to race excitement and weird competitive shit with wanting to keep up with others.  I think my last 6 miles will be totally brutal, but I do feel like I can do it and that it will be ok.

I spent the rest of the day on the couch (I kicked Molly off so that I could stretch out, and she was majorly PO'd). 



Eric was kind enough to get me the most glorious cheeseburger from one of my favorite places, which I ate in about a minute.  The Bills lost, I dozed, and then I watched Breaking Bad.  (only one more episode!!!!) I feel ok today, although my foot is pretty sore.  I am definitely concerned about it, and just hope that my body holds it together for 2 more weeks.  Other than that, I feel pretty decent, or about as decent as you'd expect one to feel after running 20 miles!!  I can't believe the end of this is so near, it really does blow my mind.

I am going to leave you with an amazing picture of Molly, which I took after I felt rested enough and she finally got to jump back up on the couch.  We were in the middle of watching Breaking Bad when I looked over and saw this:


I know, she is such an elegant creature isn't she?  I can't believe I live in the same household with such a magical being.  Maybe she was imitating me and how I probably looked by the end of the day yesterday?

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Panhandling

Another mid week post?  What is the world coming to?!  It must mean that I have a free minute to breathe if you can believe that.  ;)

So yesterday I did something a bit crazy that would have made my momma faint, and was most definitely out of my comfort zone.  I panhandled for money!

As some of you see at the top right of the blog, part of running with Team in Training for the Nike Women's Half requires me to do fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  There is a minimum amount of money you have to raise, and whatever you don't raise, you pay the difference.  It's definitely been a challenge, and frankly, a deterrent from ever doing a TNT event again.  It's not that the cause isn't wonderful, but if you don't have a big network of friends/family, then raising money is hard.  It doesn't help that I have been balls to the wall busy, so I don't exactly have time to put on fundraisers, garage sales, etc.  I'm certainly not trying to poor mouth or grub for money.  I knew what I was signing up for when I signed up with TNT, I'm just stating the reality.

Regardless, both a coworker and myself are signed up and both are in the same boat.  Small families, a small/intimate network of friends, and so slammed with work and work trips that we barely are able to train to run the damn race, much less raise money.  One of the way that some people raise money is to do a "fill the bucket" campaign, but that's really a fancy way to say that they panhandle.  I am not fancy, so I'm calling it what is is.

The hilarious thing is, our intention to panhandle has been on the books for weeks, but we had to move the date because inevitably we kept getting heat waves.  The days we kept picking were 90+ degrees by the time they rolled around, and there was just no way in hell either of us intended to stand in that for 2 hours.  But we finally caught a break yesterday and the weather was great, so we went for it.

The whole thing was a bit nerve racking at first.  We went at rush hour so it was obviously crowded, and we were also concerned that an actual panhandler would already be down at that spot.  I certainly wasn't about to get into some kind of fight with a hobo.  Luckily no one was there, so we panhandled for about 2 hours.  I have to admit that on a social experiment kind of level, it was one of the more interesting and humbling things I've done.  Some interesting observations I have from my experience:

  • Men were way more likely to give than women.  
  • WAY too many people text and drive, adding to what was already a huge pet peeve of mine!
  • We thought that the rich folks from Intel would be our biggest donators, but we were wrong.  All the people in rich fancy cars kept their windows rolled up tight, while construction workers and other average Joe's happily handed us money.
  • People are kinder than I thought.  We didn't get a single ugly, weird or lewd comment. 
We made about $300, which for 2 hours of work is pretty astounding.  It's like, so WHY exactly am I working an 9-5 job?  My coworker and I split the money down the middle, which definitely helps both of our fundraising goals

Anyway, just thought you guys might enjoy the little mid week tidbit!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

18

I finally (sort of) got a break in the weather for my 18 mile run today.  I watched the weather reports this week the way a broker watches the stock market, trying to deduce which day would be better for running.  I'd settled on today because it was supposed to rain and be in the 70s.  For once the meteorologists were not making it up as they went along, and when I woke up this morning, it was indeed raining.  I slept later than I wanted to (natch), and then hurried down to do my usual BS like coffee, etc.  I was just dragging this morning, so I didn't actually make it out of the door until about 7:20.  My plan this week was to two 4 mile loops, then two 5 mile loops.  Each one of my loops ended up being a vastly different experience, so I'm just going to break it out by that.

Loop #1 (Mile 1-4):

I was just plain old pissed off during the first loop.  The gardening that made me so happy yesterday was a bit of a hindrance for me today because my legs felt sore and exhausted.  Note to self, don't roll around a bunch of heavy shit and dig with a shovel for a several hours the day before the marathon.  And the weather just sucked.  Yes it was raining when I went out, but there was no chill or breeze in the air, and it was so thick with humidity.  A mile into my run I was gasping for breath and sweating my balls off.  I got super crabby because it's just like, it's never going to end.  The heat will never end.  At least it felt like the first loop was over pretty quickly.  I stopped in the house to make a much needed potty break, and ate some tech food.

Loop #2 (Mile 4-8):

This was the best loop for me by far.  The rain stopped, the temperature dropped just a tad and a faint breeze started up.  It made things SO much easier, especially when it came to my breathing.  I definitely found a better groove and somewhat enjoyed my run, although I got scared by some dickhead's dogs.  I live in an area where every wannabe thug owns some snarling out of control pitbull.  I passed by this yard that I have passed a million times before and never had incident, but today out of nowhere a giant pit and a giant boxer started snarling and lunged at the fence.  The boxer's head and shoulders were literally above this 6 ft. fence it was jumping so high.  It totally scared the crap out of me, and I cautiously slowed to a walk.  Of course no one came to call the dogs back from the fence, since I'm sure that would have cut into their morning meth smoking time.

When I went down a quieter street into a neighborhood I took a second to snap a picture so that ya'll could see how different today looked from my other training days:


I had my phone in a Ziplock bag to keep it dry, and didn't bother taking it out to take the picture, so that's why the shot has a hazy 70's porno vibe about it.  It was so weird to run in the rain, it's been forever!

I finished this loop up without incident, and again it felt easy and like it was over quickly.  I did have the beginnings of a blister that I managed to catch in time and tape up.  Thank goodness, because it would have been BAD if I hadn't.

Loop #3 (Mile 8-13):

Things started to go slightly sour for me on this loop, although it ended up being kind of a "happy" loop for me at the same time.  I'd mentioned at the beginning of the post that my legs were sore from gardening yesterday.  I thought that I would just run out the aches once I got warmed up, which was kind of the case during the first 8 miles.  However during this loop, the back of my legs and hamstrings began to complain.  A LOT.  By the time I got to the turnaround point on my loop I was in a lot of pain, and my calves decided to join the party too.  I was still able to jog on and off, but my walk breaks were definitely increasing.

Now, the reason it was a "happy" loop is because last week when I had that horrid run, I did my 13 miles in 3.5 hours, which really chapped me.  I was determined to finish this loop (conveniently at 13 miles) faster than last week.  I pushed through the pain and ran as much as I could, including a straight up sprint down my street.  I ended up at 3 hours and 9 minutes, which I would say is a definitely improvement over 3.5 hours!

When I got to the house, I went straight to The Stick and started rolling out my hamstrings and calves, both of which were screaming at me.  While I was doing this I heard a low rumble, and I look to Eric and was like, "Was that thunder?"  Right after I said that, it sounded like someone shot a cannon outside our house, that's how loud the next crack of thunder was.  Molly bolted from the couch like someone lit her ass on fire, and I was like um, is this going to be another 13 mile run week?  The rain began pouring down, and there was quite a bit of lightning in addition to the thunder.  I decided to wait until the thunder and lightning eased up before leaving back out, because ya'll know my luck.  If anyone is going to be struck by lightning it will be me!  It took about 15 minutes, but it did stop.

Loop #4 (Mile 13-18):

Luckily this last loop was the last one, because if any of the other loops were remotely like this one, I would have quit.  When I first started out, I thought that maybe rolling my legs out had helped them, because they didn't feel that awful.  Then they begin to hurt, just enough to make me wince and hope that it didn't get worse.

It got worse.  2 miles into my last 5 miles my legs began to hurt so bad that it was like an out of body experience level of pain.  It felt like someone was taking a metal pipe and wailing on the backs of my legs.  I've been in pain before during my runs, but this was another level.  When I ran it hurt my hamstrings.  When I walked my calves started cramping.  I literally couldn't win no matter what I did.  I even tried to repeat a little mantra in my head, something along the lines of "Your legs don't hurt, it's in your mind", to which my body responded "whatever bitch."  At the turn around point I was like, at least it's only 2.5 more miles until I'm home and done.  Except that the mere 2.5 miles felt like 12 miles. I tried my best to run when I could, but my legs were just beyond shot, and I gave up on running with about a mile left to go.  I tried to stay upbeat by thinking about how I was almost done, and that I had all this awesome stuff waiting for me at home like an ice bath, slushy coconut water, etc.  It didn't really help.  It made me think (yet again) that I had no idea how I was going to finish the marathon.  I couldn't imagine doing 8.2 more miles, it just seems impossible and depressing.


This is my time, and I felt slightly depressed about it because it puts me again at a 7 hour finish time for the marathon.  I mean good God, I can't even imagine if it really does take me 7 hours to do the marathon.  If that happens I'm changing the name of my blog to "Don't Care if I'm Fat and Lazy" and calling it a day.  Then again, I think if my legs hadn't been sore to start with, maybe it would have been different.  We shall see I guess.

See you guys next week with my, gulp, 19 miler report!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Zen

Today has been amazing, and it's not even 2 pm!  It's the first Saturday in I can't remember when where I did exactly what I wanted, when I wanted.

My week at work was still not great, but I think is about to get better.  I even managed to have a productive day yesterday where I got every single thing done that I intended to get done, without a ton of interruptions and drama.  Again, couldn't tell you the last time that happened.  It was the perfect way to start off our Friday night, and we decided to be spontaneous and go to Trader Vic's and get ridiculous on Mai Tai's.  I normally hate Mai Tai's because they are too sweet, but the ones at Trader Vic's are just sweet enough and taste fantastic.  They are also SUPER strong, so we were both pretty happy by the time we left.  We went over to a record store that we really like, and just dug through CD's for awhile.  My favorite thing is digging through the "skuff bin", (their spelling, not mine) where the CDs are gently used and supposedly scuffed up.  I haven't had an issue with any CD I've bought from it yet though.  The best part is that the CDs range from $0.95 to $1.95.  You can't really beat that.  You have to dig through a lot of crap, but you often find a treasure in there.

We both ended up getting about 5 CDs each, then going home and relaxing.  I'd already decided my run day was going to be Sunday since the weather is supposed to be better (and by better I mean 70s and raining!), so I boasted that I was totally going to sleep in.  But do you think I slept in?  For some reason on the weekends I pop wide awake at 5 am and cannot fall back asleep, yet on the weekdays I almost sleep through the alarm clock and can barely drag myself out of bed!  I lay there until about 5:30, then got up and watched the America's Next Top Model episode from last night I'd taped in secret shame.  Once Eric got up we had coffee, I made pancakes, and we just totally chilled and eased into the morning.

Then I did something I've been wanting to do for awhile, which is spend several hours working in the yard.  I am very passionate about gardening and LOVE to do it.  It's completely cathartic for me to go out and work with my flowers/vegetable beds.  Unfortunately between our insane schedule and the crappy hot weather for the past few months, I have totally neglected the yard.  My tomatoes were totally wild, my kiwi vines were out of control, and my roses desperately needed to be trimmed.

The sky was cloudy this morning and it wasn't hot at all, so it was the perfect chance to get out there and clean up the yard and get the garden ready for fall.  I brought Molly's bed with me so that she could lay outside and watch me.  Here is a picture of her "helping" me:


She really wanted to eat every tomato she could possibly find.  I let her have a couple of little cherry tomatoes, but then had to shoo her away!  The dog is like a garbage disposal, so we have to watch her closely to make sure she doesn't eat something she's not supposed to.

I got SO much accomplished.  I pulled up all of my tomato plants, trimmed my roses and the kiwi, got my composters cleaned up and pulled up a bunch of weeds.  I also replanted my 3 apple trees into the garden boxes, which was quite the project.  I'd decided a few months back that when fall came around, I was going to do this instead of fooling with a veggie garden every year.  I had 3 separate apple trees in pots, and while they did ok, they definitely needed to be in a more permanent home.  I was so pleased when I finally got done.  The yard looks clean, simple and uncluttered, which is frankly a metaphor for what I've been needing and wanting with my life lately.  I definitely felt good and like I did something that needed to be done.

The other thing I did that made perversely happy was kill some yellow jackets.  We've had a big problem with them this summer, and have been finding them in the house almost daily for the last three months.  We were worried that there might be a nest in the wall somewhere, but I think it's actually in a weird cranny at the outside of the house and they are somehow finding their way in through a window.  All I know is that they really piss me off, and I usually have a live and let live attitude with insects (unless it's a roach, then bring on the chemical warfare).  Last Sunday after that horrible weekend I had, a yellow jacket flew in the house when I went to let Molly outside to potty, and flew straight on top of my foot and stung me unprovoked.  Oh man it made me mad, especially since it was not only such a crappy weekend already, but it stung me on my hurt foot.  Since then I have been on the warpath about the yellow jackets.

As soon as I got the yard cleaned up, I rebaited the yellow jacket trap we had outside because I saw some flying around the yard.  Instead of going to the trap, the dummies were just flying around near the ground.  I got a broom and went She-ra on their asses, and killed all 3 that were flying around.  After I wacked them, I used the garden sheers to cut them in half.  Totally gross and sociopathic, but it made me feel avenged after being stung last week!  I wish I could find out where the nest is so that I could eradicate them.

After my yellow jacket murder spree, I got all cleaned up, and now I plan to do a whole lot of nothing for the rest of the day.  I plan to relax, get really hydrated, and have a great run tomorrow.  Well, as great as 18 miles can be right?  I will post a recap after my run, as always.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Weather Outside is Frightful

I literally had to take a moment out of my work day to write a quick mid-week blog post.  I have had my eagle eye on the weather all week, and in "LOOK at this ridiculous shit" news:



I mean...................

Today is supposed to be a record high.  In my non-professional, non-meteorologist terms I would describe it as "hotter than Satan's crotch".  Saturday was originally supposed to be around 72 and raining.  Over the week they have continued to upgrade it, and now they're predicting 89 as the high.  I swear, this summer will never end.  Ever.  EVER.  Looks like I will be going to bed at 8 pm and getting up at 5 am like an old grandma on Saturday. 

Thanks for letting me vent guys.  I am praying this calms down in 4 weeks when it's marathon time.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Take 2

Well shit.

It just wasn't my weekend.  My 17 miler today turned into a 13 miler, and honestly, I'm too tired and resigned to feel bad about it.  I normally would be wringing my hands about disappointing my 3 readers, myself, my husband, etc, but I don't really feel anything about it.  I was in a better place mentally today, or at least in a place where I could go do my run.  I woke up at 5 am but was so exhausted that I let myself fall back asleep.  I figured it was better to get the extra sleep rather than carry the resentment over not being able to sleep in on the weekends.  I got up around 6:30 (though truth be told, I could have slept much longer) and ate my Cliff Bar, had coffee, set all my running crap up and got out of the door at 7:30.

I knew that I was probably going to pay the price for having such a late start.  After a cold/rainy spell, which of course I missed because we were in stupid San Diego last week where it was a thousand degrees, Portland is back to heat wave territory.  The high today is supposed to be 85, and I knew I was going to not have a pleasant run, but I didn't anticipate it being so bad so fast.

I planned to do a 7 mile loop followed by two 5 mile loops, and things started out fairly ok.  There were points where my pace was really good, and in fact, there were times I was running a 9:30 pace and holding it for a minute at a time.  That is unheard of for me!  Then on the way back I really struggled.  The sun was absolutely blazing down on me, there was no shade to cover me, and I just really wanted to keel over.  The last 2 miles of my loop were SO uncomfortable.  I got back to the house and told Eric that there was just no way I could finish my run.  He gently encouraged me to try doing one more loop and seeing if I could push through, but I dicked around for about 25 minutes at the house trying to decide what to do.  I drank 24 ounces of Coco Hydro, which is also something else that is unheard of for me.  I never go running with that much fluid in my stomach, it usually results in horrible side cramps, but that's how freaking hot it was.  I just gulped it down without a second thought.  I refilled my bottle with coconut water and ice, and hemmed and hawed some more.  I finally decided that I would go do my first 5 mile loop and allow myself to walk it.  I figured I could get through it at least if I were just walking it, but it was something I needed to at least try, and if it was too much then I'd quit for good.

At first it went ok.  Walking in heat is much more tolerable than running in it, though it still wasn't very fun.  I picked a couple of side streets to duck down so that I could have some shade breaks, and I honestly felt like I could make it.  I got to the turnaround point and decided to do something that seemed really smart at the time, but probably dumb after the fact.  I reasoned with myself that if I kept going and did a 7 mile loop, then I would have a 3 mile loop to finish with instead of a 5 mile loop.  The other benefit was that if I kept going there was actually more shade, whereas if I turned around I'd be heading right back in full sun.  It all made sense to me, so I kept going.

Everything went well at first, and I even started jogging again, though very slowly.  I misjudged my turnaround point because math is not my thing, and I realized that my final loop was going to be 2 miles.  I looked at my phone and realized it was noon, the temperatures were soaring, and I still had what felt like a million miles to go.  Then it hit me of just how very hot and tired I was, how much longer I had to go, and that I would be out in the heat through it all.  I texted Eric and told him to come get me.

Again, I don't really feel that bad about it, though I do realize I only had 4 more miles until I hit my 17.  The thing with me is though, 4 miles is going to take over an hour.  The thought of being in the 80 degree weather for that long of a time was unbearable.  I am just going to go for 18 next week and not worry about it.

 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Tired

If your first thought upon seeing a new post pop up from me was, "Wow, she must be faster and is already done with her 17 miler somehow," then I must sadly correct you and tell you that I am not only still slow as the dickens, but I also did not run 17 miles today.

I was ready to run 17 miles from the preparation standpoint.  I washed and folded my running outfit and had it ready to go.  I laid out my tech food and used The Stick to roll out my legs as I watched TV last night.  I usually am wide awake at 5 but didn't wake up until almost 6:30 this morning, which is a true testament to how tired I am, because I rarely sleep that late.  I got up and did the coffee/Cliff bar thing, but was thinking how much I did not want to run from an emotional standpoint.  I began to think negatively, which is just about the worst thing you can do before a long run.  Long runs are really more of a mental challenge than a physical one, and if you start off in a bad place then you're pretty much screwed.  But I let my brain go to a bad place, which was to think about how tired I was, how sick I was of having my weekends robbed from me, how frustrated I am with other aspects of my life, and a million other things that are on my mind.  Even so, I pulled on my clothes at 8 am (an unheard of late start!) and went out of the door.

I started down the road at a decent pace, but began sweating, my knee hurt and my calves started to cramp.  It hit me all at once of how physically and emotionally exhausted I was, and when my Garmin beeped to signal I'd gone one mile I suddenly said aloud, "I can't do this today."  And I didn't.  There was not a single moment of hesitation, or a mental pep talk about rising above it.  I turned around right where I was, texted Eric that I was coming home, and then walked my ass right back to the house.  I didn't even attempt to run the rest of the way back, I walked with tears streaming down my face and every resentment from the last few months boiling over in my head.

When I signed up for the marathon, I knew that physically it was going to be challenging.  I think that anyone, runner or not, knows that the training is no joke.  What I was not prepared for was the mental and emotional toll.  It's something that is not really talked about, or at least it isn't among my runner friends or any of the running magazines/blogs.  And I'm not talking about the "oh that run sucked", or "this is hard" kind of thing.  At any given moment, I feel completely raw and exposed emotionally.  It's difficult to explain, but it's definitely one of those, "I'm at the crossroads of life and on the cusp of having to choose which path to take."  I am not typically a crier, but in the last few months I have felt so raw and fragile that I am constantly one conversation or one situation away from tears.  There are a lot of days where there are tears.  The running is not causing that per say, the cause is other things in my life, but the running is exposing hurt and resentment that I didn't even know was buried in me.  Again, I can't explain why that is other than when you are doing distance running you are having to give it everything you have physically and mentally.  Sometimes what you've got mentally is damaged.

I don't talk about my professional life much for a lot of obvious reasons.  All I will say is that it's the cause of a lot of the hurt, stress, exhaustion and resentment that is going on.  I am definitely at a point where I feel my personal life (which is wonderful and I would not change a single detail of...other than wishing I won the lottery) is being encroached upon.  I feel a lot of my personal dreams and happiness have been compromised, and have honestly felt that for some time, but the running has really dredged things up in a way I had not expected.  It is difficult to have that going on all week, and to desperately need a physical and emotional break on the already too short weekends, but to have to dedicate 4 hours to a very physical and sometimes brutal run.  And then after the run, you are dealing with physical pain and recovery, which is always a blast.  By the time that's all over, it's back to work.  I feel overwhelmed and like I am half assedly doing a million things, and none of them well.  I miss weekend things like gardening, taking the time to cook a really nice meal, going to brunch or hell...just doing a short 3 mile run for the hell of it.  Running for pleasure for me is on the backburner, and I honestly do grieve over that some days.  And I miss writing on the blog more often.  I would love to do it daily, since there are always funny little things that Molly is doing, or cool shit that Eric and I do, but I'm too tired to write about it all 90% of the time.

Days like today make me lean towards the opinion that this will be my one and only marathon.  The physical stuff does suck, like the sore feet/knees, the being hot, the time training takes.  But that isn't the deterrent for me anymore, it's the mental stuff.  I don't know that I can go through that again, and I am relieved beyond belief that the marathon is in like 4 weeks.  I know I will make it across the finish line, and I know that I will be happy and proud that I did this.  It will be one of the coolest things I've ever done in my life.  But it has changed me as a person and it's been a bit frightening.  If you are considering running a full marathon, I warn you...it will do shit to your head that you should be prepared for.

I am not discouraged or mad at myself for taking a break today.  As you can see from my flowery, philosophical post, I needed a break.  I want to do some things today that will make me feel happy and good about myself.  Maybe I'll finally clean up my summer garden, which is beginning its death throes, or make that really nice dinner that I'm always too tired to make.  I'm not sure yet.  I'll run tomorrow and it will get done, so you lucky folks will get two posts in a row from me.