Have you ever had one of those days when you tell yourself, “Ugh….all I want to do is go home, put on my sweats, pop some popcorn and Netflix.”? Yeah, that was me yesterday. I had a fairly mundane day at work. I had felt pretty awake all day. Slept well the night before (which is unusual for me). My Road Warrior group had done a hill workout the night before and my calves were screaming at me. I spent my lunch hour rolling (see my “Foam and Trigger Point Rolling” blog earlier this month) my calves and preparing for court. But then, after an uneventful court session, I was simply wiped out. I was not really feeling going for a run with my group at all. And I contemplated not going. But I knew I should. So I did.
Of course, once I got there I was all ready to go. Run courses were discussed. I was to do an easy, conversation pace 2 mile run. I knew the route. My coaches asked to try to run a full mile without stopping, then walk/run my last mile back. Now, let me back up here. I am an interval runner. It has taken me a long time to get in the mindset of interval running. So I basically got comfortable in a 3 minute run/2 minute walk protocol and finally got into the groove of that. Then came the Road Warrior Program. They push me. In a fantastic way. I have gotten down on myself a bit, but, I know where they are coming from and these ladies are fabulous.
So off I go for my one mile run. I know it involves a hill. A fairly significant hill. And the hill is at the END of the mile. So, as I start off I prepare myself. I make sure to not start off too fast, but at a comfortable pace. I am lit up like a Christmas tree so that I do not get run over by a car. I focus. I pay no attention to my calf that is begging me to stop. I focus on form, leaning forward, bringing up my knees, utilizing my quadriceps muscles to launch myself. And it was going well. I turned the corner to the road that would head up the hill. It seems long to me, although it is not as long for most runners. There were a couple times where I found that I needed to slow down a little bit. If I did not slow down, completing the full mile would not be possible. So I slowed, and for a short moment, it may have been to a fast walk, but it WAS NOT full on walking.
But then the hill came into view. Ugh. It is dark. It is cold. It.Is.A.Hill…….sigh…..but I am still running. It is a slow pace, but still running. And I am running up the hill. Up. Up. Up. Then, the end. The flattening of the hill. I am at the top! I have completed the request. And I feel good. No, not good…..GREAT! Like, “Tony the Tiger Great”! GRRRRRRREEEAAAAATTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!. So, then I do the unthinkable. At least for me, I continue to run and head back to the beginning, still running. More than a mile. I set goals. I mean, it is easier going downhill. So, why not? I will just run to the bottom of the hill. Then walk. My calf is really not liking me, but, it is okay. However, I know I should not push it. So, at the end of the hill I will walk. But then the end comes, and I don’t want to walk. So I’ll just go to the beginning of the walkway. Or maybe the end of the walkway. Yeah, then end of the walkway. And that is where I decide to stop and walk it out. And while my calf is thanking me I want to know how I did. So I make it through the snow to the sidewalk, stop my TomTom watch and see………1.25. 1.25 miles. This is huge for me. I have participated in numerous 5k races since I have started running, but this is the VERY FIRST time I have ever run 1.25 miles without walking. And it was hard. Not as hard as I thought, but hard. And doable.
I am not sure when being able to do this will happen again, but I will hold on to the fact that hard work and dedication is something that gets you where you want. Patience is necessary. I am not a huge fan of patience. I do not really have any patience, but it is true that you need to be patient in order to get the full capability of what you have worked for. So go out and work for what you want. Push yourself. Accept challenges. Surround yourself with those that give you the support and drive you desire. You are amazing. Phenomenal. You can do what ever you want to do. And you will.
Much Love! Keep Running.