Today's run was terrible. Someone from work saw me stretching with my geek-gear: Garmin, Hydration belt, iPod. Now they know how truly uncool I am. Calves were unbearably tight after mile 1. Stopped to stretch them out. My energy level was incredibly low. At mile 2.5 I broke down and took a gel. At mile 2.65 I stopped and gave myself a pep-talk. I was considering walking home because I felt so tired. Decided to run to the next stop sign and then take a slow jog back. This took a lot of convincing. Entire foot painfully numb at mile 3... like, I could not feel anything below that weird ankle bone. Loosened the laces on the left shoe. Still have no feeling, kept running until mile 4. Stopped, walked/stretched, and the feeling came back in my foot, started running again. Mile 5: foot almost entirely numb again. Took off show to investigate. Adjusted sock, numbness might be attributed to placement of padding. Started running, most feeling is back but a little numb. Mile 5.75: I FINALLY get into a nice groove, right when I am almost home. This is where it changes from worst run ever to best run ever.
Decided to just go a quarter of a mile and see how I feel. The I just kept going, down the street and back up the creek path. Miles 6 and 7 had great splits. I finally felt like a runner. I logged a total of 9 miles today, the longest run of the year. I am not sure why it was such a temper-mental run. I stretched before I ran. I drank water. I took Gu. I have been pacing my training better. Perhaps it is because I graded tests for 5 hours before I ran, and that is just mentally exhausting. But overcoming such a crappy start and making that triumphant finish happen is what this sport is all about. A sport made for the stubborn who won't take "crappy run" for an answer.
Except for the first week of the year when we were in Washington DC, I have run or cross-trained at least 3 days a week. I am so proud of myself. I am starting to plateau in weight loss, so now I started rethinking my hamburger and truffle diet (major bummer). I hope February is equally as motivating. That would be impressive considering I will be finishing up my Masters (scary) and teaching some of the hardest materials to the kids that they will encounter all year. The type of stuff that separates who will go on with math and who will be forever remedial (super scary). If all else fails, hopefully I will have my training to look forward to!
How do you deal with your worst runs? Does your foot ever go numb? Does any of this keep you from running?