In the spirit of being consistently inconsistent, running today seemed like the correct response to my crappy run yesterday. Apparently in order to make up for my one measly mile in the past two weeks, I decided I should now pound the pavement everyday until I feel like I’ve made up the mileage. Whatever that kind of thinking is, I have no idea. It’s certainly not the smart way to “plan” for the next few weeks, but my self doubt is at an all time high. I need to prove to myself that after all these years, after all these runs, I need to know that I don’t suck… that I’m not going to suck forever… Or if I am going to suck forever I need to know now so I can give this all up and sign up for a pottery class.
I said yes, again.
I said yes to the part 2 of the Soleful Mamas “Sunday RunDay”, which was the afternoon shift. Today there was an early morning crew that hit the road at 7am and there was an afternoon crew that ran the town at 2:30pm. Our P.M. run was much warmer, that’s for sure (and we had the joy of seeing what some punks did to our nice sign at the community park – I hate to admit it, but I did get a chuckle out of reading it).
I was glad I said yes to my friends, but my apologies started in the text messages as we were coordinating. I know first hand that is super annoying to everyone else who is running. No one likes a whiner.
Me: I know I’m going to suck today, so feel free to leave me behind. I don’t want to hold you girls up.
Mama C: No Mama left behind! *more encouraging words here*
Mama P: You’ll do great, like you always do!
Me: *not feelin’ it*
I said yes over and over in my head, convinced this was the very thing I needed to do to get back in the proverbial saddle. I knew I wasn’t going to feel great…again…but I told myself I didn’t have a choice…. We started downhill, which was really awesome. Then as we approached three quarters of a mile my calves and hamstrings were tightening up like a snappy little rubber band. I could feel my dehydration already at this point and began yelling at myself for drinking mostly coffee today and only a little glass of water. The Sole Blockers in my mind were RAGING. You aren’t cut out for this. You gained 20 pounds this year and it shows. You haven’t done the laundry or checked your kid’s take home folder or thought about dinner. You can’t even run 1 mile without stopping to walk. Maybe you should lose some weight and then try again. You can’t run 1 mile without wanting to quit. You can’t… You shouldn’t have… You won’t be able to.
Out loud, I kept talking nonsense about my dogs so I could combat these words that were screaming in my head. I told Mama C and Mama P about how I was in the middle of a dog fight, what it means to be a doggie foster family, and how I feel like my motto for life lately is “no good deed goes unpunished.” I was a ball of grumpiness unraveling with each step. And still my friends, my tribe mates, listened quietly and kept me swept up in the current of forward movement. I am thankful for that.
Mile 2 was definitely the best out of the 3 miles. We must have been able to find a stretch of sidewalk where we could just settle into a decent pace. It’s always hard to run around town because of all of the stopping and starting. While I am all about the rest breaks, there are a lot of times I wished we could just get into a groove, but crossing streets and heeding traffic lights was way more important. #safetyfirst Plus, I obviously couldn’t handle a “groove” today.
Mile 3 brought on a new set of tired legs that wanted to go nowhere fast. I’d walk and regroup, then start again feeling great. About 1 minute later I could start feeling the backs of my legs start tightening up all over again. Walk, run great, look at watch, see one minute go by, slow down due to tightening legs, curse wildly in mind, get angry, go faster for 3 steps, walk. REPEAT. Over and over again this stupid cycle held me hostage. It was relentless in it’s pursuit of hijacking a beautiful afternoon run. Luckily I was back at my house after mile 3 and I could stretch. I spent a fair amount of time trying to release and relieve these tired aching muscles. I’m sure it wasn’t enough stretching, but at least it was a start.
I know not every run is going to be an awesome run, but GOOD GRIEF. Sometimes you just want a running goddess like Atalanta to throw you a freaking bone.
Well, it is what it is, I suppose.
I truly know that the only things that are going to make my running better are: better eating, better hydration, and consistently following a well thought out plan. But really, if all of that fails (which it will by Tuesday), I just need to remember to put one foot in front of the other no matter what and to keep saying yes.
Forward is a pace,