This morning's cross country practice had me thinking all these crazy thoughts about running. "why do i enjoy this sport?" "this is torture" "i think my legs are going to fall off" "this is insane. why did i join this team again?" but then after practice, I was thinking all these lovely happy thoughts: "I love to run. That felt awesome!" "I finished 10 miles!" "this is why I love cross country".
It's so funny how my thoughts change all the time about running. It truly is a love/hate relationship - I think it's that way for almost every runner. It's a painful yet rewarding sport that requires a lot of hard work.
Anyway, this morning at practice we did one heckuva workout that left me drained and exhilarated at the same time.
First we ran 4 miles (through some hills, too!) at a decent pace to this state park in my area. There is a trail there that wraps around a hill and slowly climbs until it is super steep.
We did 3 hill repeats up this steep hill that were some of the hardest hill repeats I’ve ever done. About halfway up the hill each time, I hit a wall - my legs were screaming at me and my lungs were gasping for air. It was a tough mental battle that I had to fight and by the end of each repeat, all I was thinking was “just put one foot in front of the other. one foot in front of the other.”
After the repeats, we did a 12-minute tempo run back toward the school. I got a cramp about four minutes in so I fell behind a bit but toughed it out til the end of the tempo. When I finally finished the twelve minutes I walked for a little bit to catch my breath. At this point I was getting close to exhausted and the last 2.5 miles back seemed excruciatingly long.
I slowly jogged it back toward my school, dreaming of ice cold drinks and just sitting down and stretching. I was SO tempted to walk the entire way back (that’s how tired I was!) but I chugged along and told myself that walking back would take three times as long as running nice and slow.
I swear I’ve never been so glad to see the front of my school. Or a water bottle, for that matter!
The total distance that I ran today was 10 miles. I am so proud of myself for fighting that uphill mental battle and finishing strong. The longest I’ve ever run is 10 miles so maybe in a little while I can get to 11 miles!
After stretching for a little bit I got in my car and promptly sucked down an entire water bottle in about 20 seconds flat. Then I stopped in a gas station on the way home to pick up some rehydration.
These tasted like liquid heaven. Ice cold refreshments after a long hard run are truly the best things ever!
When I got home, the only thing that sounded good was an cold and creamy smoothie in a bowl.
A brown one, at that. I blended up my usual chocolate shake (smoothie? shake? what’s the difference??) and topped it with a mix of Honey Nut Cheerios, All-Bran, and chopped walnuts.
After showering I got to work on some bloggy stuff and also got my bake on in the kitchen. I made some yummy peanut butter bites that will be perfect pre-run fuel – the recipe is coming soon!
I had a couple of them fresh out of the oven and they were fantastic.
Today I also received a reminder of the upcoming school year in the mail:
I have some summer homework for my honors anatomy class that I need to get goin’ on! I am actually pretty excited about the class (minus the whole cat dissection thing…) because I’m so interested in nutrition and fitness so it will be cool to learn about how the body works.
I’m off to start my homework and make some lunch!
What is your go-to mantra when you hit a wall on a run?
Favorite post-workout drink (besides water)?
PS- I started using Windows Live Writer today but for some reason it won't publish my posts to the blog! I keep getting a message that says "The remote server returned an error: (403) Forbidden." and I have no idea how to fix it since I am not exactly the most computer savvy. Anyone have any solutions??