So I talked up a big show saying I was going to do it right this time. I was going to train and focus on my daily miles in anticipation for my first real destination run in Alaska for the Her Tern Half.
I seriously feel horribly embarrassed to call myself a runner but I'm learning that some of my own biggest disappointments in myself lead to building me up bigger and pushing myself further.
Last night I knew I wanted to go on a run, but I didn't realize that my run was going to be a long run! I set a goal to get out and run about 3ish miles or so. I figured it'd be a good launching point to start focusing on running again and wouldn't completely kill me.
While out running I found my stride and just went with it. Beforehand I tried out some new GU gummies I had and didn't realize that combining them with my regular pre-workout drink mix would result in such a long run! I started by cranking on my tunes and just going, once I was into the run I figured I'd just work on my splits instead of focusing on mileage times.
I choose to run in Crete because the change of scenery is nice and they've got a kick butt uphill battle I like to run. I basically ran up and down that mile-ish long hill then walked a square block to repeat the process. That hill was a good climb and I'm extremely grateful for some songs that pushed me to keep going when I was ready to quit.
While on the run I realized a lot of things about myself and I had a lot of time to really clear my head. You can about imagine my surprise when I looked down and saw that I had not only crushed my 3 mile goal but I was actually at almost double that mark at like 6ish miles.
Notice the picture above the second photo shows someone wrote in the cement "You R Slow" at that point, I was around mile 6ish and stopped because it was too funny not to capture. I mean seriously, I'm the only one who finds these comical signs while out running and I was thinking to myself that I was working my butt off earning the miles I'd already ran so your little humorous ways of telling me I was slow was actually just a way to push me harder to get out there and roll.
The last picture still cracks me up because it shows in about mile 8ish how I felt like quitting but then suddenly Eminem jumped on Pandora and 8 Mile literally helped me get through mile 8 to finish out my run.
I figured at that point I may as well keep pushing, there was no reason to stop so I finished up another 3ish miles to run a grand total of 9.03 miles. I was extremely surprised and proud of myself for this run. It hasn't happened in a long time that I've felt pride over something I'd done so I knew that this was quite the run.
After my run and cool down walk I ended up stopping by Casey's to grab a Gatorade (blue of course) and the cashier dude told me him and the other employee's watched me run by several times earlier. I guess they were all totally impressed with my continuous effort and me pushing myself so hard. After chatting with him for a few minutes I learned he was an ex-Marine and he said he remembers those tough runs. After I told him I just finished up about nine miles I swear he was wanting to ask if he could join last time but said I did great and next time he'd offer a water while I ran by. Kind young man. So kind.
I feel like sometimes things beyond my control help to push my running journey ever harder. Like my set-backs actually give me a reason to get out and crush a solid distance run.
The more upset and emotional I get, the better my runs turn out.
Ironic? Possibly. But it works!
So sometimes, when you least expect it. A happy run will just magically appear and you'll be inspired by what your body can do if you stop focusing on the stats and just go. Yes the pace looks horrible and I'm ok with that. I had to start somewhere and I had to just get out there. For pushing nine miles I'm ok with the first warm-up walk, the in between splits walk and the cool down walk killing my pace time.
On another totally unrelated sidenote, does anyone have a great belt they love to use while running? I realize that with the temps getting hotter and the runs getting longer it's time to invest in some type of water bottle belt. I'd love to find something that can hold a phone too since I'm kinda over the armband thing but would love to hear what you use!
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