Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The run that did not suck

I barely knew it was possible, but I hit the foggy roads for my one-hour run tonight and I loved it. Not the first 20 minutes, which felt awkward and painful and heavy and hard. But the rest of it? Oh so lovely. And so I made a big discovery about my training runs so far. I've been heading out too hard, trying to go too fast. Trying to make up for what I think is a massive training deficit.

Truth is, I'm smack in the middle of another crisis of confidence. I'm way behind where I was last year. I know how hard last year's race was, and I went into it with more training than I have now. I basically have three weeks of building fitness before the race. I can't even think about it.

"You're going to go into it so FRESH!" says Coach Scott, ever the voice of good cheer. And he might be onto something: everyone else I know is completely burned out on their training. I'm just getting going. Maybe, just maybe, I'll hit it just right, with just a high enough level of fitness to have a good time. Yikes, though, man. I'm SCARED.

So anyway, I'm trying to build my run volume without getting hurt. And since I pulled a muscle today trying to beat four tourist ladies to Zoot Coffee so I wouldn't get stick behind their 15-minute order of every variation of skinny latte known to womankind, I started my run cautiously. Without caring about the big horrible number on my watch. Just determined not to be truly injured by my earlier impatience. Imagine being denied an Ironman finish because you couldn't stand to stand in line.

The super slow pace changed everything. It was a revelation to actually enjoy the run. After my warmup, I enjoyed some ridiculously scenic sprints through Aldermere Farm.

Trotted on a little ways, then it was wheezing hill repeats up Beacon Street. So. Freaking. Hard. So completely rewarding.

Then a delightful cruise home down Chestnut Street, home to cauliflower curry surprise baking in the oven and one Allagash White.

One incredibly slow hour on the books, some confidence restored. Some understanding maybe of why people actually like to run. Profound gratitude for the whole damn thing.

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