Considering my initial opposition to this training cycle, I’ve had a strong few weeks. I’ve mostly stuck to my workouts, but been flexible when necessary (i.e. switching a 6-mile long run to a relatively quick treadmill 5K this weekend after the snowstorm made me chicken out of running outside), and enjoyed myself through all my workouts.
So, I was about due for a shitty one.
After work today, I dragged myself to the gym for an easy treadmill 3-miler, thanks to a rainy day. Easy (read: boring) treadmill runs are the bane of my existence, but I’ve been reading a lot of articles, tweets, etc. lately that have reminded me that as much as we runners might be tempted to push our speed on every run, it’s important to remember the purpose of a workout: easy runs are meant to be run at an easy pace, and so I promise I would stick to my easy pace plan today and not budge the treadmill above 6.0, no matter how bored I got.
Pro tip for runners: There’s easy pace and workouts. A lot of people train in the “between pace,” figure out what the run’s purpose is.
— stephRothsteinBruce (@Steph_Rothstein) February 10, 2013
I wasn’t feeling 100% when I left the office (read: I was really, really tired), but I chalked it up to the fact that I had been working on a data-entry-heavy project all afternoon. I also knew that 99% of the time, a workout makes me feel better and more energized, and 100% of the time, even if I’m tired all the way through it, I feel pretty kickass for having gotten it done anyway. But the fates just weren’t aligned for this run. I realized I had forgotten to pack sweatpants for the commute home, a dry shirt to prevent my sweater from getting drenched in sweat post-workout, and a rubbery hair elastic that wouldn’t slip out during my run. It took forever to find a locker at the gym. It was really hot in the gym, and I was sweating before I even got on a treadmill. But reluctantly, I pushed “Quick Start” and started running.
My usual rule during an easy treadmill run is that I’m only allowed to look at the time/distance after every 3 songs. After 3 songs, I was still tired, but felt pretty strong, and had already gotten to 1.25 miles, which was a pleasant surprise. But soon after that, my IBS reared its ugly head and my stomach started sloshing around and seriously hurting. At 2 miles, I thought a quick pause for a water break might help settle it down. But it didn’t, and by 2.6 miles, I was so uncomfortable I saw myself grimacing in the mirror, and decided to call it quits.
And then I got to lug two incredibly heavy bags on my train ride home, which included (1) creepy guys leering at me because shorts + raincoat = looking like I was wearing no pants and (2) sitting next to a giant creepy man who was chewing on his own hand.
Today was not my day. So I’ll settle for the fact that 2.6 miles > 0 miles, and if nothing else, I got to eat oatmeal, animal crackers, and ginger ale for dinner. Things could be worse. Tomorrow is another day.