In with the good air, out with the bad…

October 29, 2012

A week ago we had a 14 mile training run scheduled and just before we headed out the door I started to cry.  I stopped myself, but the fact is I was so frustrated that I started crying.  I had given myself asthma attacks 4 or the last 5 times we’d been running, pushing myself to cut time and improve pace.  Knowing that there are Olympic athletes with asthma wasn’t helping me accept any kind of limitations.


I had been trying to pace with people faster than me (even on my best days), changing elevation and climate repeatedly, and had let myself get self-conscious about how slow I am.  Because I am, I am slow.  I’m faster than a walking pace, and I’m not going to get thrown out of most races,* but for anyone who has been running for a year and has healthy lungs – I am slow.


Then I found this, specifically her section on avoiding head games.  Over the past week, every time Spencer and I have left the house for a run I have said, “This is about distance, not time.  I’m not going to win this marathon, my goal is to finish and to finish running.”  Sometimes out loud, sometimes to myself.  Frequently, when we’re on one of our walking segments during our runs (which we do regularly, both to make sure the wood stoves and car exhaust don’t pitch me into an attack and so I can drink without falling on my face) I’ll say, “These runs are so much better now that we’re not racing them.”  I’m sure it gets annoying for Spencer, and I know that he could run faster, but it helps me keep my head in a healthy place.  We had our first 16 mile training run yesterday and I didn’t tip myself into an attack at all – in spite of wood stoves, our county not requiring emissions testing, and a dirt bike rally in town.**


Now, if I could just get random people to stop shouting at me condescendingly during a walking interval I’d be set.  FYI:  “Keep going! Don’t give up! No excuses!” when someone is walking because they’re 3 minutes away from having their running partner dial 911 doesn’t help and isn’t supportive.  It makes us never want to run again.


p.s. If you see someone you know while they’re out running feel free to wave and hope they see you and wave back.  DO NOT HONK AT A RUNNER UNLESS THEY ARE IN DANGER.  There are no port-a-potties on training runs and no one wants to wet their pants in fear.  I’m being a little tongue-in-cheek here, but seriously, it’s terrifying to be honked at.  If I don’t see you, just tell me later that you saw me.


*I won’t be qualifying for Boston anytime… ever, but, you know.

**The amount of rage I felt over those dirt bikes was not healthy.

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