I am a runner.
No really, a real runner. I know this for one reason and one reason only. Only someone as stubborn as a runner would be stupid enough to go on a TWENTY MILE run, their FIRST twenty mile run, in Miami in August when it just so happens to be the day that Miami is setting a RECORD BREAKING TEMPURATURE...FOR AUGUST...in MIAMI!
I never did win any awards for being smart.
But I am training for a marathon and I do live in Miami. It's not like I am the only person to ever run 20 miles in the heat, so I did what I had to do. I kept running.
And running, and running...and drinking, and running and some walking. A little whining too, lets not lie. I even came up with a new mantra:
"Every step is one step closer to the end."
Maybe not the best mantra for say, life in general, but a pretty damn good one for running. Maybe even the best I had ever heard. And it actually WORKED. I am not a mantra/positive speaking type of gal. But repeating this new phrase over and over to myself as the tempuratures gradually rose and every ounce of salt seeped through my pores actually kept me going. Maybe because it's not so much positve as it is common sense. I may even make tshirts. I can sell them to runners, runners and owners of funeral parlors. I'll make millions.
I came up with it after we had just crossed the Rickenbacker Causeway for the second time around mile 11 and J and I were both feeling pretty much done. But we couldn't stop, we were NINE MILES from home. We couldn't walk, it would have taken forever. And give up? How could I finish a marathon if I can't run through a little heat? So we kept going because the sooner we got there, the sooner it would be over. Ahhh, the power of positive thinking!
Overall, the run was ok. I got plenty of sleep. We started running at 4:45am. The temp was 82 degrees with 80% humidity...BEFORE 5am. Sigh. Whatever, the problem was that it just got so much warmer so much faster than normal. I felt great for a long time. Our pace was good (between a 10:30 and 11:00) and the sun didn't start rising until mile 9. Then we crossed the bridge. It was hard, but not impossible. Then we turned around at mile 10 and crossed it again. Thats when it all went downhill, literally.
My stomach felt pretty good the whole time so that was alright. We drank a ton of water (almost every 5 minutes and I took three Gu's on top of the mini cliff bar before I ran so I was OK there. However, I really need new shoes and was getting a blister on a heel spur that I have. The spur actually dug a hole into the back of my shoe that I have to stuff with cotton before I run (I know, I know). Anyway, it started bothering me around mile 7 so I knew I was in trouble. Then there was the bridge fiasco. Then the sun was up and BLAZING. Absolutely NO cloud coverage. It was completely draining. Then around mile 17.5 we got back to a park where we had hidden a couple of bottles of Gatorade in a tree. They were still there when we got there (I believe someone above was answering my prayers). That helped a little, but it was pretty much too late. Those last two and a half miles were some of the most intense, self-actualizing moments of my life. It really is a testament to how much I have changed in the past year due to my running.
The old me would have NEVER finished this run. I don't even know what came over me. I just kept plugging along. I was so beyond hot that I didn't even notice it anymore. Mainly because I was soaked from head to toe. I mean, my feet were actually "sloshing". I was on the verge of hallucinating and would just zone in and out. I actually even had moments where I forgot I was running. When I had to stop to take a walk break I would almost start crying from the tightening in my legs, but I had no water left in me to come out of my eyes and was too tired to make any noise so I just sort of panted really hard. Yes, it was quite a sight. Running is sooo sexy.
However, I never felt sick or dizzy and I never got chills. I also had no actual "pains" other than the blister and my legs becoming two balls of flaming knots, so I knew I was technically OK and had no real reason to quit.
And thank goodness for Jeremy. He was so awesome and knew right when to stay quiet and right when to chime in with:
"You got this. If you can do run 20 in this weather an Ohio marathon in October will be nothing."
Or my favorite,
"Twenty miles is not supposed to feel good."
It was exactly what I needed to hear though. Come to find out later he wanted to give up at mile 9 because he was so exhausted and only kept going because he knew that mentally, I needed to get in 20. He told me he was really shocked to see how how tough I was and that it made him sort of feel bad that he wanted to give up. Awww :)
When the run was finally over the hardest part was walking the .25 mile back to my house (we start and end the runs at the end of our street and use our street as a warm-up/cool-down). Although, it would be a bit ambitious to classify what i was doing as "walking". It was more of a dragging/waddling/shuffling/sort of movement. I now know what it feels like to be 90.
The rest of the the afternoon was filled with icebaths, snacks, Gatorade and naps. I couldn't function until about 10pm last night when I finally got the feeling back in my legs and could get up from the couch without feeling as though my kneecaps were going to explode. I must have done something right though, because I feel great today. No problems whatsoever. I wasn't even tired. That's right, I'm a badass! ;)
The rest of the week was good. We had our first training day for the Miami Marathon Group on Saturday. There are about 12-15 people in our group and it is supposed to grow over the next few weeks. I kind of just tagged along and let the the main leader take over as we did our initial 3 mile run. Of course I felt stupid later when he took off and left me and the other female leader to go over stretching with the group. The other leader didn't know any streches, so I had to pretend like I knew what I was talking about. Here's me:
"Uhhh...errr...this one is good for your...uh...groin. Yeah, sit like this and put your feet together. Pull, yeah, not too hard...you'll break yourself."
Soooo, professional. Remember how I said I never won any awards?!?! So yeah, I need to learn some stretches. I just know a few and I'm no doctor. I mean, I don't know a lot of the names of all the muscles or the stretches for that matter. I just know what feels good and not to overdo it. These poor people are probably wtf kind of marathon "leader" is this?!? Sigh.
Wednesday, 8/1 - 3.22 miles/29:51 - 9:16 pace
Thursday, 8/2 - 5.65 miles/55:01 - 9:44 pace
Saturday, 8/4 - 3 miles/31:40 - 10:33 pace
Sunday, 8/5 - 20 miles/3:38:07 - 10:53 pace
Total Weekly Mileage: 31.87
Monday, August 06, 2007
I am a runner.