Run!, Slacker

Stressed Out

A little venting can be good for your mental state, right?

While my statement last week about my long runs being more consistent was true, what wasn’t mentioned was all the failed long runs along the way.    And they failed in spectacular ways.   Like I don’t know how I ever call myself a runner ways.   And I just don’t get it.

It’s not that I expect all runs to be sunshine and roses, I mean let’s be real here.   There is just something about these runs that just punch me in the gut and leave me pissed off.    So what is it?

The long runs where I fight my inherent laziness and get up in the morning have been pretty consistent.  Slow but that’s intentional, it’s the main point behind 80/20. It’s the midweek long runs that are kicking my ass.   I love getting my long run done before the weekend.    Every month I work a minimum of one Saturday.  That means I typically get a half day during the week.   Yay for extra running time!  I love getting the long run out of the way before the weekend; that way I only have a short run to fit in then I can be lazy the rest of the time.    However, this year, all attempts have just sucked.  Misery, straight up.

First, there was the slowest 10 miler ever in January.  February saw the 5.5 mile blow up- because sitting on the ground at a busy street corner is so normal.  Today- attempt number 3- 12 miles was the plan.   Reality saw 7.5, painful and slow miles.  Grrrr.

 
I was looking forward to today, I was so excited to leave work to run.  It was predicted for the mid 70’s, so I was thinking shorts would be perfect.   I’ve been sore and tight lately, so I also had compression socks on.  On an odd note- I was tight like this last year at this time-I swear it’s like an allergy.    My calves were painfully tight so I walked more of the first mile than usual.  Mile 2 saw more of the same plus stopping to stretch out my calves a few times.    They hurt but I was having trouble figuring out if they were hurting in a injury way or just more tightness.  Less than 2 miles in and I was hot, tired, hurting and having troubles maintaining any sort of pace.   I was walking more than running and felt like bailing.    I considered it but decided that I was just stiff and sore and needed to get better at toughing out runs.   By mile 5, I was pissed off and talking to myself, no way in hell was 12 miles happening.

 
I had 2+ miles to get to the car and slow running wasn’t getting me anywhere.   So it might not have been the best idea but I ran fartleks back to the car.  Oddly enough, I was holding goal half marathon pace for the same amount of time I had been running slowly before.  The walk breaks felt better too.  The only time things felt rough was when I looked at my watch and figured out I was running a sub 7 pace.  Oops.  Hello crazy, slow the hell down.   Yeah, it was only like a minute and a half and slightly downhill but it was a good minute.

The last 2 miles helped wash the sting of the first 5ish off but I just don’t get it.  Have I not adjusted to temps in the 70’s yet?  I made sure to eat breakfast and a small early lunch.  I usually run races on an empty stomach without fuel.   Was it the food that threw everything off?   All three of these horrible runs were run in shorts.  I am so self-conscious in shorts right now- like I wonder if I should burn them all.  Could that really make me so uncomfortable that I tank my runs?   I don’t get it!!!!  The more I stress about it, the more I freak out and the more the run sucks.  It’s driving me crazy!

Do I forego any more weekday long run attempts?  Do I get over my desire to not have to run long on the weekends I work and just do it?  Do I just make the weeks I work on Saturday a cut back week?   I can’t decide!

Also, I’ve been running slow for 3 months now and I feel like I am getting nowhere.  You would think an 11:something pace would be something I could maintain by now but no.  Do I keep putting in the slower miles?  Do I change things up while I have the time before marathon training gets really real? Or did I just need to whine it out?

If made it through this- thank you!

What do you think?

Happy Friday!!

  

Run!, Slacker

So This is Tight

I’m currently riding the line between denial and hypochondria.

I’ve been running for almost 5 years now, reading running magazines about the same amount of time, and running blogs for about 2.    I have probably read a hundred or so posts about people feeling tight and achy.  Achy, I understood.  Tight?  I would sympathize with the runner but honestly, I had no real idea of what tight was.     I can no longer claim that ignorance.FullSizeRender (3)I felt pretty good after my long run on Saturday but I know I didn’t stretch enough right after as I headed off to the movies fairly soon.  I was able to put my feet up while there and I stretched and rolled that night but Sunday was rough.    My hamstrings felt so tight and my left ankle was hurting.    I was torn between heading out for my easy run and taking another rest day.   The number hog in me really wanted the 5 miles, my ankle did not.   This week was scheduled as a recovery week- I could take an extra day off if I felt I needed it.   I finally decided to move that extra day to last week and I took Sunday off.  I spent the evening with an ice pack on my ankle.     IMG_9377I headed out on Tuesday for the easy 3 from work again.  I thought it would be better to push my speed work to the second run of the week.   Special me forgot to use my inhaler before setting out, so I had to take a break 1.5 mile in.  Ugh, butphoto op right?   Heading back turned into a pain fest.  My calves were so tight, my Achilles’s were (was?) hurting and my left hamstring was pissed.  No!    I made it back to my car and stretched before heading home and then stretching more and rolling.

And this is in my new book- I knew I hated that damn swinging pony tail!
And this is in my new book- I knew I hated that damn swinging pony tail!

I am beginning to worry.  I have a race in 2 weeks and SLO in 58 days.   Wednesday was a normal rest day and I made sure to roll and stretch really well.  I also completed week 1- workout 1 of my new Strength for Runners book.  I had a tempo/ mile repeats on tap for tonight and decided that would just be stupid.   I can feel my hamstring throughout the day every day.  Not necessarily pain but it’s not happy.   I have a pretty good pain tolerance though so I could be misjudging that as well.IMG_9403I headed to the lake tonight for some more easy miles.  I knew I was going to run out of daylight so I figured I may only get in 2 miles or so.  The plan was to run until something hurt or until I could no longer see out of my sunglasses.  I figured that would be a good way to measure the darkness.  😛    I felt achy at the start but felt better as I warmed up.  I pushed on for 3.25 miles.  I probably should have skipped the last lap of the lake.  It was pretty dark.    I stopped my watch .25 from my car and walked it back.    More stretching and rolling followed tonight.IMG_9400I am less worried about my ankle than I am the tightness.   I roll my ankles on a pretty much daily basis so I am used to that.  This tightness needs to go away.    Sometimes I feel like a sharp pull and I fear I might hear a snap.   I can’t decide which side to swing to- denial that it might be something or hypochondria and I am making a mountain out of a mole hill.   I know I sometimes have issues with my left leg.   Could this be more of the same?    And sadly even the comfy chair has betrayed me.  All tv watching, blogging, reading and attempts at crocheting this past week have happened while sitting on the floor.    Oddly enough, cross-legged on the floor is only comfortable position.

I haven’t actually registered for the half in two weeks.  I want to run it because it’s a race I love and this would be my 5th year running it.  I just can’t decide what to do.    I also feel super lazy that I have now skipped one easy run, shortened another and turned a 6 mile speed run into a 3 mile easy run.   This weekend calls for a 90 minute progression run and it makes me nervous.

So, thoughts?  Is it all in my head?

Have any other stretching or rolling ideas?  I have a foam roller, a stick and a tennis ball.

Would you run the half in 2 weeks?