I completed my first week of half marathon training.
And I didn't quit. I didn't make excuses. I did each and every run.
It wasn't always easy or fun, but I reached a huge running milestone: THE RUNNER'S HIGH.
Week 1, Day 1: Tuesday, 3 miles
I had built this day up so much in my head that I woke up that morning with butterflies and doubt. I knew that this was it. Now or never. It was a lot of pressure. It was 5 o'clock and I was sitting on the couch tying my shoes. W was sitting on the couch across from me completely absorbed in SDN (Student Doctor Network forums, aka: SATAN).
"I'm hungry. I knew I should have eaten a snack."
"Maybe we can eat an early dinner and then I can run? That way I will have plenty of energy."
"What time does it get dark? Do you think I will be safe running alone around 7:30?"
"UGH. I should have eaten something."
"Its just three miles though. I should be find."
"UGH. UGH. UGH."
W finally looks up from the computer screen. "You are really having a tough time with this, aren't you?"
"YES. YES, I AM. UGH. I'm going."
And I went and it was pretty much a constant struggle from the get-go. I was tired. I kept getting cramps. My big toe was being rubbed raw. I kept slowing down until I was hardly moving. I thought about quitting.
I finally finished. I wanted to cry. It was harder than I thought it would be--probably the hardest three miles I have ever run.
Mental. It was all mental. But I was even more nervous about this whole training process. I dreaded Day 2.
Week 1, Day 2: Wednesday, 3 miles
W was leaving for Lewisburg that night. I had to give him a ride to his friend's house at 6:30. We ate a quick dinner. I got him to where he needed to go. I was pumped and ready for my run. I went at 7:20. And it was just as hard as Day 1. Immediately, my legs were tired. My toe was hurting. I had stitches in both sides. I ran so, so, so slow. I hated every second of it.
I finally finished. I stripped down to my skivvies and laid on the floor under the fan. I began dreading Day 3. When would it get easier?!
Week 1, Day 3: Thursday, 3 miles
With W gone, my schedule is a bit more relaxed, so I thought that maybe Thursday would be my day. I was almost right. But then Mother Nature made herself known. It poured and thundered from 4pm until 7pm. At 7:10, I took off on my run. It was cool. There was a light misting in the air. I had the running path all to myself. I felt awesome. I wasn't struggling to breath. Nothing hurt. My toe wasn't even rubbing! I got to the end of my three miles and smiled. I felt great. Maybe this wouldn't be so bad after all.
Week 1, Day 4: Sunday, 4 miles
This day didn't go exactly how I planned. W had overnight call, which meant that he got home at 7:30am after all night working at the hospital. There wasn't a bit of food in the house. Wifely duties called. I forfeited my morning for a grocery run. Then, it got hot. I mean like muggy, swampy hot. I don't really do well running in the heat. I decided to wait it out. I planned to go at 5 but then, once again, Mother Nature surprised us all with a torrential downpour and thunder in the middle of blaring sunshine and blue skies. It was bizarre. But, it cooled things off. W and I ate a delicious dinner. I was out for my run by 7:30.
|Torrential downpour in the sunshine.|
I felt good, but then I quickly developed two stitches, one in either side, and thought I might lose my dinner. I didn't stop, just slowed down and soldiered on. The air was cool and wet. The sun was starting to set over the river. It was beautiful. Except for the stitches, I felt great. I got to mile 2 and started to feel better. The stitches had worked themselves out. Mile 3 and I felt rough. Suddenly, I just wanted to stop. But, I kept going and spurred on by some 2x2 walkers who refused to MOVE OVER, I got to mile 3.5 and reached my first ever runner's high. All of a sudden, I felt light and easy. I sped up and ran the remaining half mile faster than I had run before. It felt great! FINALLY!
How has it taken 5 months to achieve my first runner's high?!
So, to sum it up, Week 1 had its downs, but ended with enough ups to have me feeling positive. I am glad that I started this journey and feel confident moving into Week 2.
Total mileage this week: 15.6
Sunday - 2.6 (pre-training run to get my butt in gear)
Tuesday - 3
Wednesday - 3
Thursday - 3
Sunday - 4
Sure, there's a 16 year old girl clocking in over 100 miles a week (you go girl!), but this journey isn't about her. I will take my 15.6!
How are you doing with your running? Tell us about it!