Health

Mile Posts: When Running Tries To Break Your Spirit

When running tries to break you, the best thing to do is lace up and get out there again.

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Two Saturday’s ago, I set out for my first outdoor run in what felt like weeks (because it had been weeks). I don’t enjoy cold weather and wasn’t in the mood to be chilly, but knew I had better get back into the outdoor running groove sooner rather than later. The Boston Marathon is less than 100 days away. I’d like to feel good when I cross the finish line this year.

5 easy miles were on schedule for the day.

Mile 1: Wow that didn’t feel like I was running that fast (even though it was about a minute faster than I should have been running). I think I’m just cold and want this over with. Must slow down.

Mile 2: Okay better pace, but still why are you running in the 7’s. Maybe you are just happy to be getting some fresh air. Let’s run 6 miles instead of 5.

Mile 3: Ok not going to fight it. This pace just feels good today. (This mile was faster than mile 1 and 2.)

Until the pace didn’t feel good and neither did I.

Mile 4: Ok a minute slower is good. Now you are back in your easy training run zone. You will be fine. It’s just a momentary thing and it will pass.

Halfway through mile 5 I had to stop. I felt like I was going to be sick. What on earth?! I felt frustrated with how my body felt. As I sat on the ground on the side of the trail my GPS flashed “Poor recovery. Poor recovery.” I felt rage surface. Thanks watch! I know it’s a poor recovery captain obvious. After a break, I decided I needed to make my way back home, even if I ended up walking. I was already getting cold, so I started to run. Uhhhh no said my body. Emergency bathroom break ensued.

Wow – this run has gone from good, to bad, to worse. Just get me home.

I’d be lying if I said the run wasn’t discouraging, because it was.

Sunday I woke up ready to start over. I met my mom and some of her friends for my long run. On the way there, it started to pour. Great I thought— cold and rainy. Quickly I tried to turn my attitude around. I needed to finish this run. I had company and we would all suffer together. Pointing out the negatives and dwelling on them wasn’t going to do anything to help me finish.

The paths we were running on had large puddles and chunks of ice. The run felt more like an obstacle course than a paved trail through a park.

Somewhere around mile 6, I slipped on ice and fell badly. It hurt from the moment I fell but I wanted to get moving immediately. I didn’t want to think about the pain, or the bruise I could already feel. I just wanted the 14 miles to be over.

I finished and felt a little discouraged. It wasn’t my weekend as far runs went.

The more I analyzed the runs though, the less I felt weak.

I completed both of them and ran a decent for me pace. Both runs tried as they may to break my spirit, but they didn’t