Monday, July 16, 2012

Oh the mistakes I made

So, marathon training is well under way, and of course Saturday was long run day. But, given that I've been running 10 miles if not easily or consistently, then at least..some...I didn't think much of our prescribed run down San Juan road at South Mountain. I figured it would just be long; if anything, maybe a little easier bc I heard the term "rolling hills". I've had better luck in races that have a little bit of a roll to them, whether from the alleviation of boredom or the chance for my legs to change it up a bit I, don't know. I figured this would be like that.

I was so wrong.

First, let me tell you, since we don't have hills here in AZ, there's kind of two choices: flat running or hiking. I'm not a fan of hiking, tho I sometimes chase my mom around on her hikes, bc I'm super slow on uphill. Weak quads, probably, or something. There is a little bit of trail running scattered around that could be considered moderately hilly, but rather than rolling it generally is strewn with boulders and rocks of various sizes- not the most conducive for running, if you ask me. Whatever it is, it's out of the way and you have to search it out (read: drive) if you're into that kind of thing. I'm not. So let's just say I was "unprepared". We'll call that "Mistake #1", just for fun.

Now let me tell you: I am not so good at consistency. That should be obvious from the random schedule on which I update my blog; it applies to marathon training too. I do my best work when inspired for some reason, or at the last minute when fear sets in. This far out from a race...well, I wouldn't call it slacking, exactly, it's...fear of commitment? A magpie-like attention span? Negative self-talk that makes going for a run not seem like enough fun? Whatever it is, I fight to do anything consistently, and that includes taking a shower. (But, for you, I try. You're welcome.). It might be clear where I'm going with this; over the previous couple of weeks I'd missed plenty of runs. Coming up on last Friday, I'd missed all week. So, like the ridiculously gung-ho person I am, I decided to not only get in a run on my rest/cross-training day, but to make it a speed workout to make up for missing it on Wednesday. Mistake #2.

I also did it at a 1 incline. Mistake #3.

I haven't mentioned yet I don't think, but I'm in a yoga teacher training program that schedules blocks of training every other month; being that the schedule is somewhat sparse and then jam-packed, I try to take full advantage of the turbo-sessions when they come around... So naturally I had had 3-5hrs of asana every day last week and was getting a little burnt out by Friday, one of the reasons I missed some of my runs. That's Mistake #4... So I was super smart and didn't go to practice classes on Friday. 
One of the many things I learned this session: this super horrifying glute med/ IT stretch.  Attempt only if you hate yourself. Or, you know, want to be good to your body or something.

...but I did get up early to get some theory in before my run. Mistake #5, especially as we were having friends over later for a going-away party. I...could have used some sleep, maybe.

Mistake #6 I hesitate to even name as such, bc I had so much fun drinking and hanging out and playing games with everyone that I can't really say I regret it. We had omg so much fun on Friday night that the couple of drinks I figured I'd get away with turned into for-reals drunkenness, and staying up till something like midnight. Before a 4am wake up call. I'll go ahead and call that Mistakes #6 and 7.

So that's a bit of a deficit to start with when we turned up Saturday morning. If it hadn't been for The James I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have gotten out of bed. But I did, and we drove down to meet the group- and discovered that our super-early morning heat advantage is all but gone at this point in the year. What's more, our much-beloved monsoons from earlier in the week had left us with a 5am that was muggy, oppressive, and about 89 degrees with like 80% humidity. Before sunrise. Mistake #8 is that I even live here anymore, because as noted previously, 80* is about my limit for running in, and that's if it's bone-dry or not in a theme park. Mama likes it cold!

To save you suspense, I'll just tell you that mistakes #9 and 10 were not bringing enough water or calories. I figured I'd be fine with the belt I normally wear, refilling at a couple of stations our coach had set up...but I didn't count on the heat, and having to pour liberal amounts of water over my head to keep from overheating. I don't know why this is, but I overheat at the drop of a hat- actually, fuck hats, I can't run in a hat even in the winter. If there was an Overheaters Anonymous I'd have to join. I'm pretty sure I could get sunstroke indoors. So why I imagined that running so early would protect me from the wretched AZ deathheattrap is beyond me. I ran out of water for all of miles 6 and 7 and even tho I refilled at 8, I was pretty finished after that. I had a lot of fantasies about collapsing and being picked up by a concerned triathlete or scooped up by a park ranger in an air-conditioned truck...It didn't help either that I bonked somewhere in there bc I had only brought sport beans, and altho I brought plenty, I put them in the outside pocket of my belt and they bounced out; so I was out of those by mile 6 too. So let me just tell you: it took me 2 3/4 hrs to do that 10 miles, and if Jason Voorhies had appeared anytime after mile 5 I would have been perfectly happy to see him.

 I recounted some of my foibles to our coach when I finally staggered in (super super last), and she said "I'm surprised you even finished". That made me feel a little better, like I still somehow did better than expected under the circumstances...but of course I'm quickly back to worrying, "how could it take me so long to run 10 freaking miles?!". Ah yes, wanting to die probably slows you down a bit...but still! So. Ten mistakes I won't be making this weekend (or ever again)-? We shall see, my friends, we shall see!


  1. Well judging by the consistency with which we repeat our mistakes, we can at least be habitual about some things! Kudos to us for at least showing up. Thank God we have a team, or we honestly wouldn't train at all. I guess I have you to thank for that, so good call on that one.

    And totally saw all of those sport beans on the road. And I do feel a little demoralized that it took us so long to do 10 miles considering we've done holds in almost the same amount of time.

    Okay, this is the only time my new phone has pissed me off: it will not let me change 'holds' back to 'halfs' just so you know. Arg.

    1. Omg, blogger is super iPhone unfriendly. How annoying. It just took me like 10 minutes to get my comment to post!

    2. that sucks, idk why they can't develop a good app for it. but i'm still jealous!

      i can't believe you saw my beans, i was totally watching for them on the way back but i only saw one...which i may or may not have picked up and eaten...

      i had a good tho short run yesterday, hills on the treadmill, and i emailed susan about it; she was like, yeah kind of duh, when you're hot a lot of your resources go to cooling you down and pumping blood to your skin- not to your working muscles. so, i'm going to say it was actually pretty good that we got out there and stayed on pace (pretty much) for that run! beyond expectations! :)