Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Break Me Down

No brave face today, dear readers. I'm not going to lie--I just straight-up feel like poo. A worn down, ground down tired runner lady, is what I am.

Last night mrp and I headed to the track. It was not insanely hot for a change. Still hot, just not insanely hot. Mrp was so kind to run my workout with me and I swear if he hadn't I wouldn't have had the mental strength to do it. We warmed up separately, I ran up to the ball fields, where there conveniently are bathrooms and water fountains. I passed my running friend *E*, who had just finished her own workout, on my why which was a nice little surprise (good luck on Saturday, by the way!) I then trotted around for three miles and did my strides and then met back up with mrp to start the 1000 meter intervals.

I was to do 6 x 1000 meters at 3:57 with a jogged 200 meter recovery (~1 minute). Off mrp and I went. I felt pretty good for the first one. We pretty easily came in in 3:52. Oops. We did our little jog and then on to the second. I knew I needed to slow them down to my proper pace, so I worked a little harder and maintaining control. We did a better job, but I zoned out a bit in the middle and we were a second slow coming in at 3:58. Starting in the third rep mrp did a great thing by running a little ahead of me. This helped me maintain focus and not zone out. I came in 3:56 for this one. After the third one and during my 200m jog I started to dread having to run fast. I wanted that 200 to go on forever! But it didn't and off we went for four and five which were both 3:57. I really didn't want to do the last one, but because it was the last one I also didn't want to ruin the workout so I sucked it up and busted my butt to come in on time in 3:56. It hurt. 6:19 pace should not hurt me. I feel kind of pathetic.

After the 1000's it was time for 6 100's. These are pretty fun. Hard but fun. Mrp and I each picked our lane and took off. As always the first couple were tough, but then they get easier and easier. I ran as fast as I could without feeling like I was going to literally break myself and managed to run them in 18.5-19.5 seconds. Not bad for a broken old lady.

I still had two miles to go when I was done. Normally, I feel a sense of satisfied relief at the end of a workout. Last night I was even dreading the 2 mile cool down I was so tired! Seriously. I had to gut it out. I just wanted to stop running and curl up and take a nap in the lush green grass of the football field. I wouldn't have even cared that band practice was going on. I could sleep through sloppy formations and trumpet blurts just fine, believe me.

So after all this, mrp reminded me in the car on the way home that the half marathon I'm planning to run is in just a little over three weeks. I'm not shooting the messenger. Mrp is so unspeakably wonderful for hanging with me during my workout and being my live in the flesh coach. Sure, I have a coach coach who plans my workouts, but mrp offers the coachly advice and support on a day to day basis and when it's all said and done I owe mrp everything for helping me to be the best runner I can be and I love him to pieces. Ok, mushy tangent done.

The point was, I signed up for the half today and as I did, I had this sinking feeling in my stomach. How am I going to run 6:30's for 13.1 miles when I can barely run 6:19 pace for 6 x 1000 meters without feeling like I'm going to puke. And as I type this my eyes are heavy and I just want to crawl into bed and wake up tomorrow morning with a nice refreshing fourteen hours of sleep. My legs don't hurt which is all kinds of great, but they and I are just so so so so tired. It's hard for me to believe I'm getting faster right now. I guess that's the point. I just need a little reassurance that all this time and energy is working it's magic. If I push through, will my body really adapt and I'll be the marathoner I hope to be?

This reminds me of law school. In each class there is this period in the middle of the semester where nothing, and I mean, nothing makes sense. You read an assignment and you have no freaking clue what it has to do with anything else. You feel like a total moron. You keep at it anyway, worried about failing the class. You show up and your eyes glaze over during the lectures because it just doesn't make sense. The professors would ask questions that would leave you stupified. Yet through it all, you hang in there and the weirdest thing happens. By the end of the semester you look over all your notes and you see this outline of the course and it all makes sense! Law professors would refer to this process as breaking you down to build you up. Please tell me I'll be built back up!!!


Jim said...

Don't get too down, Salty. You know how fickle the human body can be. Out of the blue, whamo, you have a day like that and are clueless to explain why. Keep the faith in your training program and the great results and workouts you've had recenlty. You'll bounce back faster than a ping pong ball.

E-Speed said...

I think you are going to bounce back soon. I swear the freaking muggy weather has put a damper on all of our running. I know you'll turn it around quickly. Just don't crush me too badly next Tuesday ;)

Joe said...

Yikes. My legs hurt just reading about that workout.

GP said...

I had just finished typing my "I've experienced the same struggle... with swimming" scoop, but I think we've all been there in some capacity.

Times like this (in training, work, school, life) are like running uphill. And right now you're 3/4 of the way up! Rest assured that you'll make it to the top and it'll be smooth sailing from there.

Keep smiling... you're totally about to bounce back!

Papa Louie said...

After you suffer the summer training you'll reap the rewards this fall with great race results.
Now go soak those legs in an ice cold tub.

GP said...

So, I ran my first 5K in Hudson this morning (just on a whim, as you had recommended looong ago) and I won my age group. I never do that. Yeah!

It wasn't a fast field, but I was still proud. And for the moment, I felt like I was a Salty-caliber runner in my little beginner's world (in my ability to win... not necessarily to run... I'm not there yet ;-)

AddictedToEndorphins said...

You'll be back quickly! I know it...Maybe your body just needs to adjust to the higher mileage!

Hang tough!

Tom said...

The body can do amazing things.

With the quality workouts you're doing and the proper taper, you should nail your HM goal in three weeks.

You're on your way to a great race experience!