Is it really Sunday already? The only thing getting me through this next week is going to be the 3-day weekend that lies ahead. Thank you Martin Luther King, Jr. From the responses to my last post, it looks like most people agree that dinner is best served large and hearty. Glad to know I’m not a lone weirdo 😉
Last night, I went out to dinner at The Yard House in downtown Denver to celebrate a friend’s birthday. While I’m a huge fan of their beer selection (they have more than 100 different beers on TAP), their food is usually a huge let-down.
Every single thing that I’ve ordered from there in the past has been so salty that I could barely eat it, and I have a pretty high salt tolerance. Last night, however, I was pleasantly surprised. I started with their basic field greens salad with balsamic on the side (nearly impossible to mess up). Also, once I got there, I realized I forgot to put my memory card in my camera, so phone photos it is!
For my main course, I went with their turkey burger. It came topped with roasted tomatoes (since I’m in love with them right now), melty mozzarella cheese, and a side of fries.
This was surprisingly very tasty and not salty at all! I’m so glad I finally found something worth eating there. It might be that I’m biased with the roasted tomatoes, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.
Quit Playing Games With Me
Normally this would probably be said to a member of the male race, but this is actually to myself. Since there was snow on the forecast yesterday and chilling temperatures for today, I opted to do my 11 mile long run yesterday. In hindsight, I’m glad I got it over with since it’s icy and cold today, but it’s runs like yesterday’s that make me question if I can finish the full 13.1 miles in my upcoming half marathon.
It started off with a fuzziness in my head that I couldn’t shake. I’ve been suffering from a head cold and slept a full 10 hours the night before my run because I was worn down. I woke up feeling okay, so I took off, and I just felt groggy and worn down from the moment I started running. I made it through the first 5 miles or so at or below my 11:50 long run pacing target, but then I started unraveling at lightning speed.
The tipping point was my feet. I don’t know if my feet are swelling more than usual due to the increased mileage or if I just never noticed before, but my feet were killing me. The toe boxes on my shoes are now too small and squeezing my feet in from the sides, and it’s fu*kin painful. I even resorted to running with full heel strikes to keep the pressure off of the balls of my feet, but that was even more uncomfortable.
Because I kept getting distracted by my feet, I was mentally not in the game (probably a huge part due to my cold). I felt clammy the whole time because my body was warm, but it was only about 30* outside. I foolishly decided to leave my SPIbelt at home and stuffed everything into my pockets instead. That was dumb. When I got hot and wanted to fully unzip my outer layer, everything bounced around so much that I had to zip it up again anyway.
For the last 6 miles of my run, I literally had to will myself forward a quarter mile at a time. 6 miles is a REALLY LONG distance when you’re trying to do it in quarters. It’s like trying to trick myself into thinking I’m almost done 24 times in a row. My body caught on, and my internal dialogue went something like this:
Brain: Come on legs, those feet don’t know what they’re talking about. You can go for another quarter mile.
Legs: Bi*ch! That’s what you said like 5 quarter miles ago!
Brain: I know, but you can do it. If you do, I’ll give you a cupcake.
Legs: Then how about I NOT get a cupcake, and we just stop running instead.
So I did…for a little while. I had to alternate walking and running for those last 6 miles because my feet felt like they were going to fall off, I started getting more stuffy, and I was just in a really bad mood by that time (oh, and it started snowing pretty hard for the last 3 miles). I finished 10 miles about 6 minutes slower than my average long run time, and I was so happy to finish my 11th mile that I almost cried (and nearly threw my shoes into the street).
I’ve been really good about breaking through the mental walls on my long runs, but none of my tricks worked this time. Because of that, I’m going to blame the crap run on my head cold and shoes. It was just so utterly frustrating to have to struggle so hard through so many miles. It didn’t even feel satisfying when I finished because I was so miserable.
I’m reminding myself that there will be bad runs, so I shouldn’t get hung up on this one. Maybe next week will be an amazing run that helps me realize that I can finish my half marathon strong. I still have 4 weeks after all. That’s still plenty of time to get thing figured out and transition to a new pair of shoes before race day. Until then, here are some pictures to keep myself motivated.
Also, mucho thanks to Lynne @LGSMASH for hosting a Chobani giveaway! I received my winnings yesterday, and it’s delicious 🙂
Question of the Day: Runner or not, how do you get through extremely tough runs/workouts? Tell me about it.