It’s a bi-weekly training update for the Columbus Half Marathon!
A Year of Running
My very first activity on Runkeeper was logged on August 15, 2013. I ran 1.18 miles in 15:35 with an average pace of 13:15. I look at that now and my jaw drops. I’ve come a long way! I ran a few times prior to finding the Runkeeper app, but all in the month of August as I had my back procedure the last week of July. And so, I have been running for one year.
In that time I have run 732.2 miles for 133:09 hours. I have burned 76,717 calories. My best (most miles run) month just happened last month, when I logged 117.5 miles for 20:22:58 hours. My longest week ever (most hours run) was this past week, having spent 5:29:30 out on the roads and trails. I’m tired typing all of those numbers.
I have changed who I am as a person — inside and out — over the past 12 months. I am healthier now. I am calmer. I am more joyful, more peaceful. I am a bit more tired, but 133:09 hours. Having never run anything longer than a 5K prior to this time last year, I can truly say I love running.
Except when I don’t.
Is Summer Over Yet?
I know I just waxed poetic about not wanting summer to end and with Kindergarten Open House happening this week (OMG), I maintain that I am not ready to send my boys back to school just yet. But really, I’m over the hot-hot-hot and the super thick humidity and the relentless sun. And, you know, the near heat exhaustion.
Yes, yesterday scared me. A lot. We all know that I run hot at all times, even when I’m not running. The boys shivered, claiming that they were “freezing” yesterday as we visited FireDad at the Fire Department; I was sweating. My favorite temperature to run in falls somewhere around the 35 degree mark. Give me a windy, cold winter day over this crap any time. The heat has been tanking my pace all summer, and I’ve let that go, understanding that it is similar to the wind and snow slowing my pace in winter. I let go of pace awhile ago this summer, content with just getting runs in when they need to be run. But I was running slow yesterday. 11 minute (plus!) miles. I was not pushing my body. I carried my water and magic beans like a good girl. I hydrated beforehand, fueled up with some gentle foods. I went early-ish, but not at o’dark-o’clock because when your mother-in-law has your children and you get a chance to sleep past 7:00am, you sleep past 7:00am. Duh.
It didn’t matter. My already hot internal temperature gauge blew a freaking gasket and I had to stop my 13 mile run at 9 miles — FOUR WHOLE MILES FROM MY CAR. That meant that I had to walk FOUR WHOLE MILES in the blistering hot sun (and my two hour sunscreen gave out, so I have wicked tan lines and slight sunburn) with one drop of water left, stomach cramps, cramping calves, tears streaming down my face that eventually dried up because dehydration, hips that wouldn’t move anymore, HORSE FLIES, and, eventually, a wicked dizzy spell. I survived, mainly because my wonderful twitter friends saw that I needed help and reached out to me to keep me focused back to the car — where I doused myself with one bottle of water and glugged down another bottle.
Then I did the thing that I said I’d never do a year ago when I learned that crazy people sit in a bath of cold water and ice cubes after a long, hard run.
Oh yeah. I took an ice bath. I’m really a runner now. Honestly? And I know everyone says this and those who haven’t taken an ice bath all say, “Yeah, whatever,” but it really wasn’t that bad. Then again, I like to be cold. I took it not only to get my core temperature back down but to get the ridiculous cramping out of my calves. It worked. Huh.
Taking a Break
Today is my normal rest day. I am also taking off Tuesday and Wednesday, and will readdress how I feel on Thursday to decide whether or not to run that day. I reserve the right to take the entire week off. FireDad and I discussed that at this point, I am risking giving myself a heat related injury big time. I’m sensitive to heat and hot and humid and all of that, and I need to rest up, hydrate, and come back in a few or a handful of days — or a whole week from now — with a better plan.
I felt really defeated yesterday morning, but I am chalking it up as another lesson of running. I’ve learned the importance of listening to my body while training this summer, and this is one time I really, really need to listen. I need to rest and reevaluate and come back ready to run. I’ll tell you what I learned in my next bi-weekly training update in two weeks!
For now, look at pretty pictures I took while running over the past two weeks. Ooh, shiny.