This morning was the kind of morning that would derail my progress in years past. It was a pretty terrible run. I started with the intent to do a 45 minute speed workout and ended up with a slow 2.9 miles. AND I had to walk part of the last mile. So not good.
The story of this run has to start with this confession: I hate the beach.
That’s not exactly true, I love the beach, I wish I could go more! But what I don’t love is the fact that every time I go to the beach, I end up the color of a lobster. No matter how much SPF 50 sunscreen I put on, no matter how many times I reapply, I end up sunburned. I think it’s because even though I reapply throughout the day, I don’t quite do it in time. It’s too late by the time I think to put more on.
This past weekend, I went camping with some friends from my church, on Cape Cod. We went down to Mashpee where the water was warm and we could swim in the ocean, which I love to do but can’t very often because I live on the bay side of Massachusetts and the water is very cold in the bay. I managed to burn the shape of my swimsuit into my back, which has made wearing sports bras kind of difficult.
I started out this morning, my interval timer happily ticking away the warmup, while I chugged through the first mile in some serious pain. My back was literally on fire. Today was the first time since high school that I nearly cried on a run. I was halfway through the first mile, nearly in tears, which was throwing off my breathing and my form, so I reassessed. I paused after the first mile to turn off my timer, and decided just to do my normal 5K route. I pushed through the pain and after the second mile was feeling pretty good. I had loosened up a bit, so I felt better.
Until I crested the last hill, and got a stitch in my side.
It felt like just one more shitty thing on top of all the other shitty things on this run. I think it was caused by the poor form from plus the really off breathing, but I actually had to walk a bit on the third mile. I was feeling really discouraged. This is how my training usually gets derailed. If I had any kind of illness or slight injury I would give myself leave to stop running for a week, and then that turns into two weeks, then three. Or if I felt like I had a bad part of the run I would just stop, walk home, and plop on the couch with my coffee.
Today I decided to keep going. I jogged the rest of the way to the elementary school near my house (I am actually an alumna of this elementary school), got my breath, and proceeded to do 5 strides, and some drills. This did cut the mileage short but I really wanted to take advantage of the last few days before school starts to use the field without a bunch of little kids running around. I felt like I finished strong and even though the pieces of my workout kept knocking me down, I just kept going and, while it was far from my best performance, I’m glad I didn’t let this stop me. I’ll be back out tomorrow, I won’t use this as an excuse to take a break.
(I do hope this sunburn fades soon though. )