Wednesday, October 01, 2008

digging out of a funk

Training had been going so well... then a few weeks before taper - I ran into a few injuries. I was able to still run well but had to cut back a bit - to keep my foot on track. Well after a couple weeks of that - apparently my foot decided it wanted a real rest so it went out and got a nasty cold and stuck it in my head and lungs. Such a nasty cold that I did not run my 20 miler on the sunday morning I planned. I actually bailed on my running buddies that morning - which in my eyes is a big no no. So determined to get the miles in - i did my run monday night. I pushed too hard... and basically knocked myself out for the week. Friday night I decided to do the akron half marathon. So we ran down to akron got me signed up - grabbed some dinner and went to bed. I woke up every hour on the hour b/c I was afraid I would over sleep. Got down to the race with plenty of time - warmed up a little bit - but was so out of it - i thought the race started down by the stadium - so i was wandering around confused. I eventually made it up to the start. My goal was to run a little faster than race pace. Just so I could see how that felt - and practice getting through the water stops and staying on pace. Well the first mile felt like i was really pushing it. It was a 8:19 -- when your goal marathon pace is 8:24 -- that's not exactly pushing it. So mile 2 - i started walking. I felt awful. It was like I was in a dream where no matter how hard you try you can't run - even though someone is chasing you. It took everything i had not to duck into the parking and get in my car and leave without finishing the race. I told myself that I couldn't wear my shirt from the race if i didn't finished - and besides - no matter how bad a day I am having - i'm not going to quit a race. So I plodded on. Walked a lot. Learned that I need to take my water belt with me. The race seemed to like to taunt you with the idea of a water stop. you would see a sign that said "aid station ahead" and I swear it would be another half mile til you got the water. It seemed long enough when you were thirsty - that you started thinking perhaps you missed the water stop. So anyway - it was an ugly ugly ugly day. Not as slow as my first half marathon - but almost 25 minutes slower than i ran at the river run. So what are you going to do? Well if you are me you worry and freak out and start doubting yourself. Well that was Saturday. Yesterday (Tuesday) amie asked if i was up for our last real track workout. I was not - i was nervous that I forgot how to run. But i knew i needed to go. It ended up being a good workout. I whined and complained because task mater glen was there - and he was trying to make sure that we weren't giving ourselves too much recovery time (which we still did) It made for a tough workout - and i was a little worried about over doing it. But - even with going out to fast on my first set - I kept the others consistant and right in the right pace zone. So I left the track feeling a 1000 times better.
On my drive home I got to thinking about the upcoming towpath and started worrying about the bq. Then I started laughing at myself. If you would have told me when I was training for my first marathon (4:48) that i would someday be obsessing about qualifying for boston - i would have laughed in your face. When did I go from - let's see if i can finish a marathon - to hmm i like this running stuff - i'd like to try to get faster - to this self depricating freak that is worried about running a 3:40. It's good to have goals - but why can't I ever be proud of myself for what i have done? I'm never going to win a marathon - I'm never going to go to the olympics - but I'm a pretty good runner. If you look at the common person - we are all pretty damn good runners. We run marathons and triathlons for goodness sake - we do something that most people don't even attempt! So i'm going to go out there in less than 2 weeks - knowing that i'm a pretty good damn runner. I am going to have the best run i can -- the towpath is home turf - I know the course well. It's going to hurt - but i am going to run smart - and i am not going to feel sorry for myself when things start to hurt. I am going to go out and try to qualify for boston. If it doesn't happen - then i am going to run the best race I can - and go for the biggest pr I can. and ... i am going to be damn proud of myself for finishing my 4th marathon. I will qualify for boston either in two weeks or someday - but i need to remember to run for the love of the sport - and not get so bogged down with splits and times and paces. i need to run to run - because it is what helps keep me right.


Brian said...

You'll get there someday. Hopefully you'll be fine on race day and have a strong race. We can't all be speed demons like the chicks you run with. It's taken them time to get that fast. I'd love to help run you in, but my butt can barely get 5 miles in at a 10+ min. mile pace right now.

Brian said...

It took me until my fourth marathon to qualify and it was one of those days where everything came together perfectly. Keep chipping away at it. You can only improve so much from one marathon to the next. Just don't lose sight of the goal. With that said, I'll be hootin' and hollerin' for you to BQ at Towpath. I can help pace you if you need it.