That’s how long it has been since the last time I ran double digits. I used to run them at the drop of a hat. Heck, I even had weeks where I ran double digit runs more than once.
12/8/13 I ran 14.5 miles in 14 degree weather. Overall is was a great run. But that was the day my foot pain became too much of a…well…pain. I wrote my trainer, Charles, who immediately said to stop running. I’ve wrote about the issue and my recovery from it a few times already so no real need to rehash it. But, man, getting back to double digits has been a pain in the ass.
I’ve been doing runs again for about four weeks. A few runs the first few weeks and then five times a week the last two weeks. Been knocking out five and six mile runs with ease during the week. Then I got out and try to do my long runs on the weekend and I just…hit…a…freaking…wall. I KNOW it’s mental. As George Sheehan says, the flesh is willing but the spirit is not. So this week I told myself I was going to go double digits.
So what do I do this weekend…totally set myself up for failure. We had our memorial service for my aunt that passed away on Saturday so had to travel for that. So no run on Saturday. Then I ate like crap Saturday night and stayed up to late. This seems to happen too often when visiting family. Woke up Sunday feeling like I had stayed up to like and ate like crap the night before. Did the mental self talk dance of whether or not I was going to run. One online friend had just completed a 24 hour/50 mile run over night and another friend was running his first half marathon while I was lying in bed. Yeah, like I really had an excuse to not run. Since we were at my parents I had to drive into town to run…they make the people who live in the sticks look like city folk.
I ran a 3.05 mile loop around the metropolis of Coquille, OR…population 4200+. I completed the second loop and told myself I wasn’t dying so just keep going. Mile 6-8 sucked. I finished mile 9 and thought there was no way I’m going to leave myself a mile short of double digits. So I bore down and did a half mile out and back to get to 10. Of course, I got to 10 I felt like I could easily keep going.
It’s funny how once you break through that mental barrier it’s almost like you’ve given yourself permission to do more than you thought you could. Although I will say, mentally and physically, I almost feel like this was my first ever double digit run. I’m pooped!
Next weekend I have a race so doubt I will get a long run in. But the weekend after that I’m going out to do it again!