“A person should set his goals as early as he can and devote all his energy and talent to getting there. With enough effort, he may achieve it. Or he may find something that is even more rewarding. But in the end, no matter what the outcome, he will know he has been alive.” - Walt Disney

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Stunk Like a Skunk

Last Saturday's run was BAD.  Definitely in my top ten all-time stinky runs.  After giving myself matching blisters in San Francisco (haven't read the race report yet?  Check it out here), I decided not to run on Tuesday.  Then, when the alarm went off on Thursday morning, it was entirely too easy to turn it off and go back to bed.

So, when Saturday morning rolled around, it had been 6 days since I'd run.  I'd been in touch with one of my PGLs (Pace Group Leaders) during the week to get some guidance on a good recovery mileage for me on Saturday.  The group was doing 15 - can you say no way!?!  He suggested 5-7, so I figured that sounded good.

Before the group headed out on Saturday, I worked it out with our group "mascot," S, (one of the guy's wives) that she would be my (wonderful) sag wagon for the morning!  She'd meet up with us on the trail about mile 7.5, and I could stop there with her while the rest of the group continued on.

Starting out, I expected some residual stiffness and soreness, but I also expected to loosen up within the first mile or two.  That didn't happen - my calves were so tight and painful, I was miserable.  Add in the stifling heat and humidity (boy, did that short trip to San Francisco spoil me, or what?) and I was huffing, puffing, and dragging a**.  When we saw S at about 3.5, I knew I was done.  She offered to let me crash with her, and even drove me back to my car before she met up with the group again at the next stop.

While driving home, I was really beating myself up over quitting after only 3.5 miles.  I kept telling myself that I should have pressed on - it wouldn't have been as bad as I thought it was going to be - stuff like that.  By the time I was nearing my exit, I'd talked myself into stopping at my "normal" trail and seeing if I could get in a little more mileage.  I did a short loop and managed another 1.5 miles.

So I totaled 5 miles on Saturday morning, but they stunk.  Like a skunk.  Really bad.  But I got them done.  And later that day, when I was venting my frustrations over the bad run(s), some friends helped me see a few things a little more clearly:
  1. 5 miles is 5 miles, good or bad;
  2. An occasional bad run doesn't make or break anything and makes no difference in the grand scheme of things;
  3. Sometimes the body knows better than the brain - if I wasn't ready to do 7.5, then my body knew it, even if my brain didn't; and, finally,
  4. I have some pretty amazing friends who are so supportive and always ready to put a positive spin on things!

Saturday's Run:
  • Group Run:
    • 3.5 mi, 0:49:00; 13:59 min/mi avg pace
  • Individual Run:
    • 1.51 mi; 0:20:06; 13:17 min/mi avg pace


  1. Jenny- Where do you get the sports glide stuff that you told me about on my blog. I have never heard of that, only body glide?

  2. Kayla - it's Sports Shield, and I buy it at RunningWarehouse.com (free shipping!). I use: http://www.runningwarehouse.com/descpage-2TOMROLL.html now, but I've recently been looking at also getting: http://www.runningwarehouse.com/descpage-2TOMP8.html. Good luck!

  3. At least you did the 5 miles - that's perfectly acceptable and a good start to get back in the swing.

    I had a similar experience on Saturday and couldn't even get 3 miles in...Just not a good day for me and the running.