Sunday, October 16, 2011

11 Mile Morning

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I was very nervous about this morning's run since it had been a very bad training week for me.  Food-bad.  Runs-bad.  General exercise-bad.  We met at 5:00 and Diana was joining us again, this time from the start. 

As we took off, the weather was cool, although a tad bit muggy.  I had a hard time getting into a good groove; but sometimes it does take a couple of miles to feel it, and we had so many miles to go. I knew I'd get there...eventually.

In spite of all of this, things were going pretty well.  We were all in sync and keeping a good pace. It was still dark as we ran into a neighborhood with some really pretty houses.  So pretty, in fact, it was distracting.  And then we had a man down.  Diana had tripped on a sidewalk that was jutting out of the ground.  It was awful.  We were only a little over 2 1/2 miles into the run.  She was done.  Her knees were scraped up pretty good, and her husband was coming to pick her up.  We stayed with her until then and joked that the people were probably going to call the police because of the three random people standing on the sidewalk in the wee hours in the morning.

So this is all bad, but the break that we took while waiting for her husband must have been the break that was needed for me to get my stride.  My breathing was better, and I just felt more ready to tackle the challenge ahead.  Once we got out of that neighborhood, we were on a main road with NO lights!  Kelly almost tripped there, and I think it may be time I get one of those helmets with the headlights on them.  Not really, because I don't think I could handle running with that thing on my head. 

Although things were better, my legs were bothering me.  I'm not sure why.  At one point, Kelly asked me, "Have we even gone four miles yet?" and we hadn't.  All of a sudden I was stunned by the distance we still had to go.  But it wasn't horrible, it just sounded like a lot.  I was still determined to do it, even though we were behind on our time.

Somehow, the streets just seemed shorter.  The last time we did this route, it seemed like this street Morgan just went on forever.  But this time our water station was waiting for us before we knew it. 

At mile 7, two things happened.  First we saw the first group of our club heading our way.  These were the marathoners, and they were on their way back from their 20-mile run.  We cheered them on as they passed us.  Then the pain in my legs seemed to get more intense.  We were almost at our turn-around point, and when we made it there, my hips just felt so tight.  Kelly said her legs were getting sore, so we decided we would stretch really well when we stopped for the second time at our water station.  Then the second group of marathoners passed us up.  But right after they did, their alarm sounded for their 1-minute walk break.  So we passed them up.   Kelly and I joked later and were all, "Oh)yea!  We totally passed the elites!"  (Ya, even if it was just for 10 seconds!)  =D

As discussed, we did take a break at the water station and stretched the best we could.  We were at 9.6 miles now.  But we were suffering.  We said out loud to each other-"We've already done this.  We're almost done.  We've got this."  And we ran.  Concentrating on each minute, we ran.  Minute by minute was the way it was.  The ten mile run was tough mentally.  In that run, I had a battle going on in my head that I had to defeat.  This time it was physical.  My legs were hurting, but I the battle wasn't in my mind.  There was no choice but tokeep going, and I knew that I could.

Finally, we made it to the last corner.  I love that corner!  We were in the home stretch, and we ran it in.  11.18 miles!

Kelly told me later that I had really kicked it up a notch in the last mile and a half.  When I checked the Garmin, sure enough.  We were the fastest in those last three miles than the rest of the run.  That made me feel good.  Kelly has always struggled with mile 10.  Although she may have been battling in her mind to finish, she never appeared to waver, and she ran like a champ! 

I now understand how people say if you can run this distance you can run the half.  I can see how you would just keep going.  It hurts. You want to stop.  But you would just keep going.  I can see it now.

Of course, next time I struggle I'll be all, "What do you mean I can run a half!!!!"

We stretched before getting into our cars to go home, and once I sat down I felt all the pain rush into my legs.  I was hurting so bad, it was comical.  I got home and immediately got into the hot tub.

My little one and her neighbor friend were attending a dance clinic, so it was a mom's afternoon.  My neighbor, Dierdre, treated me to the best pedicure I have ever had.  It was endless and filled with all kinds of wonderful massage and lotions that rejuvenated my pained legs.

Her first race!
 We'll see. Worse case scenario, we won't sign up for a race after a long run.  But look at the excitement on her face.  I can't wait to see how she does on her first run.  It will be worth all the pain if she loves it and has a great time.

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