Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Of Gummi Bears & Dollar Bills

For my long run this past weekend, I chose to skip the group run and stay in my neighborhood.  There was talk of meeting at the top of some trailhead, carpooling to the start of the run, and needing special "trail shoes."  Far too many new things for this little "agoraphob."  Oh well.

My training plan called for 10 miles this week, and I have the perfect 10 mile route in my part of town.  It was the perfect "comfort run" - just what I needed to trick myself into running 10 miles.  If I start from the end of our driveway and head east (?) on Glisan, I just have to run 5 miles out and 5 back.  At the 5 mile mark is the high school my husband attended (and that his father taught at) as well as this huge playground he calls "Imagination Station."  I talked Daniel into grabbing me some gummi bears and water, and meeting me at the Imagination Station as an aid station.  There's nothing like the promise of gummi bears to make me shut my mouth and move my feet.  It also helped that there was a nice sunbreak as I left the driveway.  And that my husband commanded me to leave our property and not come back until I'd run 10 miles.

Yeah... I almost completely wimped out of this run.

But I have my husband to thank for not relenting to my whining, complaining, bargaining, yelling and general b!tchiness.  He seriously deserves a medal of some sort... or at least his own bag of gummi bears.

I'm glad I got out there. 

Once I started running there was that sunbreak I mentioned, and I really felt strong and got into enjoying the run almost immediately.  I approached the "big hill" that's about 2.5/3 miles in and did some good self-talk to coach myself up the hill.  I tried saying all sorts of aggressive things like, "I'm going to kick this hills @ss!" and "I'm going to make this hill my b****!"  But that only resulted in me giggling and losing my cadence.  So I just decided to keep saying, "I can do it, I can do it, I'm doing it!"   Much more my style.

I grabbed some gummi bears and a water bottle from Daniel at the halfway point and then set out for home.  As I was headed back down the "big hill" two things happened;

1.) I found a random dollar bill
2.) It started raining

I put the dollar bill in my pocket and tried to keep my head up and look awesome in the rain.  I always wonder what people think when they see me running through the rain.

What is that crazy lady doing?
Is she in trouble? 
Where's the fire?
Why does she run like a gerbil?
Wow - she's super awesome!

All speculation... it's quite possible no one even notices me shuffling along. 

When I was about 2 miles away from home, the polite drizzle transformed into this ridiculous - and I mean REDONKULUSS - downpour.  I got a text from my Mom asking how my day was going and managed to text back (while running) that I was running my ten miler in the rain.  I felt really cool.

As I approached a crosswalk, Daniel pulled up in the van and asked how I was doing.  Part of my complaint that morning had been that I didn't want to run in the rain.  By this point, however, I was so determined to finish out my ten miles that I didn't care about the rain anymore.

During my half-marathon training, I only did that 10-mile run once.  I actually ended up walking a significant portion of the last 4 miles, which was pretty discouraging at the time.  A little more experience - and some helpful coaching - had me in a different head space this time, and I was able to get through all ten miles feeling strong and accomplished. 

It's just going to get fun from here!  I believe I have one more 10 mile run, and then the miles start building...


I'm really going to need those group ones once we hit the 13+ mile runs... mostly because I'm a big chicken and will psyche myself out and come up with some awesome excuse NOT to run.  I'll just have to decide which sounds scarier; 

a) finding parking downtown
b) running 12+ miles ALONE...

Oh dear...


  1. Out of your multiple-choice list, if I saw you running in the rain, I would think:

    Wow - she's super awesome!

  2. Good job!! I really like your questions that you were wondering about "what people think" that is so funny. I do the same sort of thing. And your sharing your self talk too. It is so funny how you can try that sort of thing and then realize "this is NOT working" back to what works for me. In childbirth I tried picturing the calm special place thing and I just couldn't get into it, I think because I don't care about going to some tropical island. Instead I had to picture myself climbing Mt. Rainier one slow step at a time (which I had done before having kids and knew that you could do one slow step at a time) "kick breath, kick breath . . ." whammo 3 babies!