Monday, August 18, 2014

And then, things go in your favor...

BIG group run down Big Cottonwood. Only 3 long runs left until the big day!
   As you may know, my last blog post was kind of a downer. However, I needed to write it. I needed to put out in the universe how overwhelming and emotional marathon training can be. Maybe I helped a fellow runner in training? I feel like sometimes people admitting they struggle is exactly what you might need when you are struggling. It makes your problems seem less isolated from the human experience.
   A day later I found out that my blog post did motivate a fellow runner. Joshua took to his blog and wrote a response back to me. If you haven't read the response yet, you should. He is a constant support for me. He always know the right thing to say and do to keep me in the journey and I really appreciate him and everything he has done for me.
   My state of mind going into my long run on Saturday was one of apprehension and general unpreparedness. Friday was Joshua's birthday and we were throwing a party for him after the run in a nearby park. I had spent his birthday with him at the Davis County Fair, walking in the heat and not drinking as much as I should have. I did, however, have a life changing experience on a fair ride with Becca. She will tell you we went on the scariest ride ever invented. I will tell you it was amazing and I wish I could put the faith and bravery I have about fair rides into my running. That would help a lot. Anyway, because we needed to get the party started at a decent time, we decided to throw it at 9:30, after the run. That meant I only had 4 hours to do 20 miles. That is, if we started at 5:30 when I wanted to start. Sometimes life doesn't go the way we want it to go.
   We got up and knew that we were going to have a tight window to get my 20 finished. I am slow, so 12 minute miles would really be pushing it for me over 4 hours. I secretly knew I couldn't keep that pace, so had made plans that my much faster husband would get back and do my part in the party for me. Then, he woke up with tummy troubles. We ended up being late to the meet up point, then even later to start. I don't think we started running until 6 AM. I then knew I wouldn't get in the full 20 on the course and would have to stop early to get to the party.
   I did meet a lovely lady named Katie on Facebook through our running group and knew I would have a friend to run with for as long as I could go. Joshua has been nursing a hurt foot and wanted to do more of a speed run for only 12 miles, so I had to get a new running partner. We headed out as the runners pushing up the rear (as I always am), but determined to get in a good long run. I don't know what bewitching power Katie holds, but we fell into a wonderful pace and kept it going for mile after mile. One bathroom break and a painkiller break later, we had ran 10 miles and was still going strong.
   We hit the steepest part of the canyon and I slowed down to save my aching foot while she continued on with the pace we had set. I was alone, but feeling pretty good. Other running friends passed in their cars giving shutouts and much needed encouragement. Even though it was hot and I didn't prepare like I should have for the run, I was having the best run of my life. Mile after mile passed. I couldn't believe how great I felt. I was in need of a bathroom and after finding 2 locked ones, I knew I would have to hurry to the bottom of the canyon where a bathroom would be waiting for me. I ran faster and really pushed, but had to walk the last maybe .2 miles so I wouldn't have an accident.
  I found Katie at the bathrooms and found out we had done 15.1 miles with only 2 walking breaks. THIS NEVER HAPPENS! This is the farthest I have ever ran without walking breaks. It was now party time and I was in search of my husband only to find out he was still out running from Joshua. Mark's phone broke and wasn't allowing calls or texts, so we set out on the out and back everyone was running to add miles. We walked since we both were feeling the canyon (and we thought we would find Mark sooner) and by the time we found him and came back, added another 1.4 miles to our workout.
  After some car juggling we finally got to the party, 1.5 hours late. GAH! That isn't the way to celebrate the birth of someone so important to me, but, being a marathoner himself, he understood our tardiness. I did get him his watermelon and we got some treats then we headed home. I didn't end up running the extra 3.5 miles I needed. Several people pointed out that I had had a great training run already for the day and not to push myself into injury. I, instead, took a much needed nap.
   All in all, it was the run I needed. I could have kept running. This never happens. It was the shot of courage I needed. I am so thankful that after a rough training, I finally got a great run in. I am now ready to try this again this week.

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