Ok, maybe it wasn't quite as bad as the above title suggests, but Saturday's run was ROUGH.
I was looking forward to an easy-paced 10 mile run with Josh that morning, and when I got up my body didn't give me any clues (that I noticed) that I was going to be in for a very rare rough run. We took off, and right away I just felt off. I thought maybe things would get better as we went along and I warmed up, and they did for a couple of miles, but I was feeling SO tired. And even though we were going nice and slow and easy, it felt hard. (It was cold, snowing, and windy, but I have run in MUCH worse).
It was hard like, "Why is my house so far away?". It was hard like, I would have given up and called it a day if we hadn't been on a loop (and I have never once given up and called it a day on a run). It was hard like, I stopped and walked for little bit when we passed the eight mile mark. I never walk on a run.
And after walking for a little bit, I asked Josh if he thought he could piggy-back me the last two miles home, and I was only sort of kidding. He said he would (and he loves me enough that he probably would have tried if I had been serious!). I grunted and started back to running. I actually felt better those last two miles than I did most of the run, but when I got home I collapsed and felt like I had run much further and much faster than I had.
I wondered if I had fueled well enough after Friday's long run. I wondered if I hadn't gotten enough sleep last week (probably didn't, but probably never do). I wondered if I was getting sick, as a few of the kids have had a cold. I wondered if I wasn't hydrated well enough. I worried!
But I did everything I could to take care of myself. I drank water all day long. I ate well and made sure I got enough calories. I took it easy as much as possible and went to bed nice and early. I did not set my alarm for 4am like I usually do, but let myself "sleep in" a bit until I woke up on my own (and got EIGHT full hours of sleep).
When I woke up on Sunday morning I did have a bit of the sniffles but nothing terrible. I didn't feel overly tired or bad in any way. My resting heart rate was normal. I got up and got ready to run, still toying with the idea of a rest day. I looked outside at the beautiful sunshine, realized I felt great, I decided to go for it, knowing that I could pull back and take it easy/call it off if my body felt tired or off at all.
The plan was for 12 miles broken up like this - 1 mile @8:30 pace to warm up, then 2 miles @8:00, 3 miles @7:30, 4 miles @7:15 and 2 miles @8:30 to cool down, then 5x100m strides. Nothing too fast, but not an easy run either.
I knew within the first half of a mile that it was going to be a great run. My legs felt fast, my body felt strong, my breathing was calm, and I felt great the whole way. Yay!
My actual splits ended up being 8:15, 7:59, 7:52, 7:27, 7:20, 7:30, 7:10, 7:07, 7:05, 6:59, 8:17, 8:16 plus 5x100m strides. I can't say it was effortless, but the paces came easily and it was a super fun run. I was extra happy to have such a great run.
Yesterday was an easy paced 10 miler and once again I started off feeling good and finished feeling good (despite still being sniffly).
And today the plan was for 10 miles with one mile @8:30 to warm up, then 8 miles @7:30, then 1 mile @8:30 to cool down. Actual splits were 8:14, 7:22, 7:20, 7:21, 7:13, 7:15, 7:16, 7:17, 7:12, 8:20. It was FUN and I felt great. I felt comfortable and strong the whole way and really enjoyed myself.
So yeah. On Saturday I had a bad run. I did my best to baby my body afterwards and look for a culprit, and then got out there and went after it again the next day (without letting the bad run mess with my head). And I am glad I did. While I do focus on the big picture and am very mindful of taking care of myself and watching out for signs of injury or over-training, I also think it's important to get my runs and workouts in. I know that not every day is going to be a perfect run and that some days will be harder than others. If I were to see a pattern of hard runs then it would be time to reassess what I am doing, but for now, one rough run out of many weeks of training isn't anything I am going to stress over. Especially since I have now had three days of really great runs and am feeling as good as ever.
On this topic, a quote jumped out at me in the June 2012 Runner's World. In the "Follow the Leader - Advice from the world's best runners" column, Andrew Carlson (a 30 year old Brooks runner who placed 6th in his first marathon - the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in 2012 - with a time of 2:11:24) said, "Sometimes it's okay to not listen to your body, like when you're sore or tired. Unless you're sick or injured, listening too hard can cause you to miss too much of your training."
I get what he saying here. He isn't saying DON'T listen to your body, or don't rest when you are sick or injured. But he is saying that some days we are just going to feel more tired or sore than usual, and sometimes it's ok to train through it.
What do you think? What do you when you have a bad run?
"Every worthwhile accomplishment, big or little, has its stages of
drudgery and triumph; a beginning, a struggle and a victory." - Ghandi
"The price of success is hard work, dedication to the job at hand, and
the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best
of ourselves to the task at hand." - Vince Lombardi
"It takes a little courage, and a little self-control. And some grim
determination, If you want to reach the goal. It takes a great deal
of striving, and a firm and stern-set chin. No matter what the battle,
if you really want to win, there's no easy path to glory. There is no road to fame. Life, however we may view it, Is no simple parlor game; But its prizes call for fighting, For endurance and for grit; For a rugged disposition that will not quit." - Navy SEAL Masterchief
"Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn
around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work
around it." - Michael Jordon
"The man who can drive himself further once the effort gets painful is the man who will win." -