Week 9 – 13 miles (halfway there!)

Today, I ran alone.

My running buddy hurt her leg last week. I got a text earlier in the week saying she flipped over the handlebars of her bike and was, understandably, injured. I haven’t heard the whole story yet, but I can only assume it involved something heroic like trying to save a stranded dog 🙂

So, while she is recovering, I went solo.

                                                           I am sad.

Today is a summary of what I was thinking – and by that I don’t mean “you’re running 13 miles and nothing is chasing you, what the heck were you thinking?!”, even though I’m sure that’s the response of most.

I woke up this morning at 6am and couldn’t go back to sleep (nice). I stayed in bed till 7 thinking about how I didn’t really feel like running, which certainly wasn’t helping me sleep. Nor was it helping my motivation to get out of bed and run in the first place. Contrary to what it may seem like, I actually don’t wake up in the morning and think “yay! Its cold! Its time to run for 2 hours! Yipee! Let me get my shoes! weeeeeee!” and run out the door basking in my positive glow.

Actually I think “ah, warm bed. Do not want to get up. Dog is snuggly, I am comfy. Screw you shoes….ok self get up, get up get up dang it!”

Since I’m on no set time schedule requiring me to meet someone or drive somewhere I spend a good 20 minutes procrastinating: Hey, I need to take a puff of my inhaler. Look a rogue sock, let put it in the laundry. Ugh, this counter is dirty, I’ll just wipe it off real quick. I can’t find my chapstick, lets go search for it. Someone may have texted me at 730am on a Saturday, let me go look. Oops, I forgot to take a picture of myself for the blog. Aw, my shoelaces aren’t tight enough, retie! Oh no I forgot a water bottle!

Then I finally made it out of the house.

One of the biggest challenges of long runs is, well, all of the time you have. Music helps, but you still have an awful long time with yourself.

I kind of have ADD brain when I run (ok, all the time) but generally speaking, this is how I kept myself entertained:

The first few miles I encouraged and demanded functionality of my reproductive system

And, sort of embarrassingly, thought of all kind of cute ways I could announce being pregnant assuming that day ever comes.

Then I started to take note of the random things strewn about on the side of the road, including but not limited to: a hub cap, pumpkin guts, several pumpkin halves (apparently throwing old pumpkins in the trash is not the cool thing to do), various garbage items, a skull (I actually stopped in my tracks for a sec until I realized it as fake – what a story that would have been), some random tubing that reminded me of a bong, and a flock of geese that I momentarily considered running across the street and scaring. I also considered crouching in the grass and trying to pop up and scare the next person to ran by, but then I realized I would be there for a VERY long time before that happened.

Then I started complaining to myself about how long the road was. Not that getting to the end would be all that exciting, it just meant I was turning into another road.

Then I tried to come up with funny lyrics to random songs but I was having trouble concentrating with other music in the background. All I could come up with is like 1/4th a verse to the tune of “Gangta’s Paradise” about the lack of shoulder on the road leaving me with minimal running room.

As I run down the road I try to avoid death

There’s a car coming at me

And there’s no room to my left

Hey….a pumpkin. So much for that.

I’m at about mile 9 now and the backs of my legs and butt are starting to tighten up. So then I’m trying to figure out why a distance I ran fine a few weeks ago is now giving me issues. I resolve to stretch more. (right)

The next mile or so is kind of a blank.

Then I run into a neighborhood and take note of all the houses for sale and take a mental note to check for rentals for a friend of mine. I’m in somewhat unfamiliar territory and panic momentarily when I realize I might be hitting a dead end and have to turn around making my run longer. Luckily, there was no dead end and my panic (as usual) was unnecessary.

The last 3 miles I spend alternating thinking about vising home for Christmas and the fabulous cupcake and coffee that I will be consuming when I get home. (it was fabulous). And of course throughout I was totally writing this blog in my head. Its really not as organized as I make it sound either. Its more like:

I wonder who I’ll get to see when we go home for Christmas. Should we do presents this year or not? Maybe I’ll take an extra day off. Wierd, a hubcab. What am I going to blog about today? I wonder if anyone reads the darn thing. My legs hurt. Come on ovaries, work with me, will you? Hey, geese. Maybe I should run across the street and scare them. Maybe I can work the day after Thanksgiving and take an extra day at Christmas. How the heck am I going to run 20 miles in Ohio? Dang, that car almost hit me. Hey, this house is for sale, I wonder if they are looking for renters. Make mental note to tell friend. My legs hurt. Why is this run making me tired? Mentally run through writing blog. Maybe I should try to make up a funny song. etc etc.

All I have to say is, next week is 17 miles, and thankfully (for all of us) I’ll have more than just my brain to keep me company.