Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Taking Out the Trash Run

That's what I named last night's run. Basically since Sunday evening, I had been some sort of wannabe-crazy-hormonal-who-knows-what woman. I had been feeling grumpy, emotional, even downright bitchy, and I couldn't put my finger on it. While talking to PJ, he said I needed to run because I start to head on a downward spiral if I don't run for a while. I thought to myself, "I just ran on...Friday. Crap." Normally, I have a soccer game to add in sprints/intervals between run days. We didn't have a game this past weekend. No wonder I had all this "trash" building up. After prepping food for meals, I went out and ran. I told myself slow and steady, at least try for 3-4 today. After all, I do have a 5K race in 2.5 weeks. I started out at an easy pace and cranked up the playlist. Everything was great: the weather, the music, even my legs with screaming shins. My head started to clear and I felt myself start to even out, climb back on kilter, so to speak. I started approaching my 1.135 mile marker. Now, on my "straight shot" runs, this is where I turn around and head home for a total of 2.27 miles. In my head, I had this conversation:

"I can turn around now and make this an easy run, or I can turn right and go for a 3 mile minimum. I could save my legs and add mileage later this week.

I have a 5K coming up. I need to up the mileage and get used to the 3+ miles again. I REALLY want to run a 10K or 15k or even a half by September end. I MUST add this mileage. I have no choice but to turn right."

Here's where I dropped of my "first load of trash", or my excuses for not pushing myself harder. I turned right and went head on into the wind for some so-called trail running, which is actually a 0.5 mile of ditch running instead of running on the small road. The next mile was quite uneventful. I pushed on, slow and steady, and felt like my mental trash was dissipating. I began to feel normal.

I had about a 1/2 mile until I reached home; down the top of the hill I was on and up the next to the top of the hill I lived on. My legs wavered. I kept my pace until the last climb up. The somewhat gradual incline looked like a mountain to me. All I could tell myself was "come on" over and over, every three steps. Then, there it was. I crested the hill and saw my last bit of mileage, the .02 of my 3.02 miles. I finished sprinting (and smiling) that last tenth of a mile, taking out the last of the trash.

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