This morning, I had 14 miles on the schedule. I was ready. Legs ready, lungs ready, stomach…ready. The only thing that continues to plague me the night before long runs is insomnia. And, I’m so consumed with the next morning run, that I sit, immobile. Talk to friends. Read. More sitting. It’s not good. Then I go to bed at an early time, like last night, and read. And then I turn off the light. Then it goes back on. The dogs. The neighbors. This only happens when my kids aren’t here. Otherwise, I’m slightly busy.
We had 3 loops planned, with me dropping Kim off at 10 miles. The first 5 at 5:30am. Who can go wrong with that? The sun isn’t up, the air is cool. You feel strong. Our first loop was beautiful, sweet. We came over Jack Tone overpass and saw the new clock tower, indicating we were on track for our time.
Our 2nd loop was out the dreaded Shell-Spring Creek loop. This loop is going to the graveyard. Today. It’s the loop that continues to taunt me. At mile 7, after taking my Clif Shot Blok, I was hit with nauseau so bad I nearly pulled over and took care of business. At the end of our 10, Kim peels off to the side, while I head out to the trail…for the last 4 miles.
My shoelace was too tight. I could feel it, and it hurt. I leaned down at 11.2 to tie it, and that was all she wrote. I walked on and off the next mile or so, but couldn’t get back in rhythm. Because I was tired. Literally I had 3.5 hours of sleep…the last time I looked at a clock was 1:30am.
I laid down in the shade on the path. A bicycler came by, looked at me and said…are you okay? I was. I just wanted a nap. So I took one.
As I headed out to the last 2 miles, I was walking, dejected once again. Damn. I thought to myself …I’m not a runner. Like, at all. Why am I not on an island in Tahiti sipping something cold? Why am I doing this?
And…there she was. Another runner. Looking strong. Coming around the corner. I said hello to her, and she stopped. Said she was training for her first full marathon. She was tired…but we both started talking about our long runs, running when you have kids, her husband who is training for his first IM. And then I turned the corner. We exchanged names, running routes, Mom stuff. We talked about water, fuel…etc.
It was then I started to run. I turned the corner, and I ran. It was a shit run. It was. But the only thing that would get me moving again was seeing another runner. Because you people are the bright spot in my training. Wherever you are, say hello. It may get one of us running again.