Sunday, November 11, 2012

Fun Run? I think not.

Last night, while I lay in bed, I mapped the route I wanted to take today. I wanted to go slow and long - but I didn't want to run in circles again. I decided to map out a run that would have me go 13 miles. I wanted to see what it was like - since I have my hopes set on racing a half sometime next year. What I should have done was found a route that was flat, and that did not take me into potential danger with road debris from the recent set of storms we had.
Live, run and learn, I guess.

The roads I chose were cambered and had inclines that were very gradual and what seemed to be never ending. There were still electric wires strewn across the roads in various places, and so much debris, if I wasn't serpentining, I was jumping over things.

I did bring my new hand held water bottle (thanks, Theresa!) and some gels, as well as an Advil Cold and Sinus just in case.

There is something very unsettling about heading out for a 13 mile run when you understand that by the time you get halfway to your goal, you are far from your home, and subsequently a bathroom. Although I was getting considerably warmer,(I overdressed again, but only with a long sleeve, high collared shirt) I was getting a very scary, chilling feeling each mile I ran with the four way traffic that is 25A. I was positive that I had to go to the bathroom, but I remembered I went before I headed out, and I hadn't had too much to drink after that. So I was concerned about what it was I was actually feeling.  As I looked down (I was at the crest of a hill) and ahead, past the line of cars at the corner gas station at 25a and 107, beyond I saw another long rise of  highway rolling down and up out of sight again, and I let my fear get the best of me. I turned around and headed back. That decision cost me about 4 miles off my route.

So, as I was running back along the same route I had come, I had to decide how I was going to make that up, if I was going to keep my goal of 13 miles. Close to mile 7, I stopped and started walking (the second time, I think) to water and fuel myself. I checked my watch, and found that I was about 8 minutes behind my goal time to finish. I wanted to come in at 2:05:00, but I saw that I was not keeping the pace I wanted, and perhaps should think about slowing down and running for the distance only. I had also decided that I would make a left onto Glen Cove Road, go south a bit, and head back north along a more populated, but less trafficked road. I would also avoid a VERY steep hill on the way home. As I made the left, to my horror I saw the road bear slightly left, and I could make out another long, unforgiving swell of pavement that looked like it would take me right up through the stratosphere. (Being diminutive can be disadvantageous  - things look ginormous at the most inopportune times..)

I went for it, holding on to the brim of my hat, because halfway up that enormous, torturous beast of a hill, 6 or 8  LIPA trucks - the big ones with the cherry pickers - came barreling down the right hand lane - 20 or so feet from where I was running. Some honked as they passed me, probably laughing at the cross current they were creating - I felt like I was towing an additional 20 pounds behind me. As the last one passed, and before I even reached the crest, I slowed down to cross the 4 lanes of traffic, to continue the onslaught of pavement rising up to meet me.  I eventually had to make a right anyway, so the time was right to cross. But this time, I would be running with the traffic. The passing cars, now on my left, would provide a little bit of wind wake, but this time pushing me in the direction I was running. Or so it felt.

At about mile 9, I was now headed in the direction of home. After dodging still more road and even sidewalk debris, I stepped precariously onto a curb, and felt the cool, electric tearing of the fascia at the bottom of my right foot, right at the base of my longitudinal arch. CRAP. I knew what I had done, and although the tingling feeling lasted no more than 100 yards, I was dreading the rehab I was in for. Hopefully, I could start treating it when I got home, before it got worse as I slept tonight. I knew my first steps in the morning would be anything but normal. 

The good news, however, was that I was only a mile away from home. By the time I looked at my watch again, I was on one of the side streets I usually run and saw that I had only run 10 or so miles. I said, out loud, actually - "How am I going to run another 5k?" - and decided right at that moment that I wouldn't. I had ample excuse - I needed to tend to this injury if I was to continue to train in the coming weeks if the weather held. I turned off my devices, and walked home.
No PR's were broken - as a matter of fact, I was slower than my last 10 mile attempt. 

As this was my first long run in my larger size sneaks.. I can say that my sister and the sales woman at the Huntington Running Shop were correct. I had a small blister, but no pain.

Lesson: Going out and back, you have to get back to the elevation you started at, one way or another. I may have avoided that really steep hill on my way home, but I had to make up for it somewhere else along the way. 


Today's Run

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