I find it interesting how your outlook on running can change depending on if you’ve had a good run or bad run. I have to constantly remind myself that you have to have a bad run to appreciate the good runs that you have.
Last Thursday my workout called for running 6 miles. I headed out on foot for 6 miles and my dad wasn’t too far behind me on the bike. I went out not looking forward to the run. I wasn’t mentally in to the run. I struggled from the first step.
Not more than a 1/2 mile in to the run my calves started hurting, my shins were aching and I just wasn’t having a good time. I kept pushing on though because I knew I had to get this run done. I even had a friend drive by while I was on my run and after, she commented on my Facebook saying “I could tell by the look on your face you weren’t having a good run.”
3 miles in to the run, I stopped and had a mental and emotional breakdown. I stopped and cried and cried to my dad saying that these are the days when I say it’s easier to be fat. When your fat, you can eat whatever you want, you don’t have to care about if you’re going to get your workout in that day, etc. (Actual thoughts going through my mind.) I wondered how I was going to be able to run 26.2 miles in 1 month when I could barely run 6 miles that day. What the hell was I thinking?
I finally finished the run. I felt defeated, I felt frustrated, I just had a TON of negative emotions. What is interesting is even though it was a bad run, I didn’t regret going. I don’t think I’ve ever regret doing a workout.
Now…fast forward to Saturday. I had just completed a sprint distance triathlon and I was in the car on my way home. During that 45 minute drive home, I was thinking how 13.1 miles of running was awaiting me at home. I could feel my body getting tired. I prepared myself for a mentally TOUGH run. I prepared myself for a lot of emotional abuse from myself.
I got home, I ate 3 pieces of pizza to refuel myself. I iced down my shins, and spent very little time lallygagging around. The less time I had to doubt myself on this run, the better off I would be. I hurried and filled my water bottle, packed 3 enery gels for my run and headed out the door.
Running up the street was a little tough, but I knew there was an end in sight because then I had a good 3 miles of flat road, with a couple of rolling hills. The BIG hills that I had to climb, I ended up just walking up the hills. They were too tough for my tired legs that day. Normally I would beat myself up for having to walk up these hills, but that day, I didn’t feel guilty about it at all.
My coach had on my schedule that I was to run for 6 minutes and walk for 1 minute for the 13 miles. I thought I would welcome that 1 minute walk, but I actually did not look forward to it. This was such a good run that I wanted to run the entire 13.1 miles; however, my coach had put in bold that I need to walk the 1 minute, so I figured it was pretty important. Haha!
Even when I started to get blisters on my feet, I just bit the bullet, kept smiling and kept running. What I thought would be a physically and mentally tough run, was one of the best runs I’ve had in a while.
I honestly think that the bad run I had on Thursday prepped me for my good run on Saturday. Saturday was one of those days where instead of “How in the hell am I going to get through 26.2 miles?” type thoughts, I was having the thoughts of “Only 1 more month until the Ogden Marathon. It’ll be tough, but I’ll be able to do it.”
When you’re having a bad run, just remember, that bad run is prepping you for a REALLY good run. Like my coach says, just remember, “Lots of smiles and lots of miles!”