Every season, there’s always one bad run. If you’re lucky, it’s only one; if you’re REALLY lucky, it’s a training run, not your actual race. Up until now, my long runs had been really solid–some were even pretty damn spectacular–but I knew I was due for a bad one and it came yesterday…
Coyote Creek is a notorious trail for me. Bad runs seem to happen there more often than not, and usually it’s because it happens to come up on the schedule just when the weather seems to be at its hottest. It wasn’t quite as hot yesterday as it could have been, so at least things started off on a good note, but it was pretty clear from the get go that this wasn’t going to be one of those spectacular runs.
It’s not unusual to feel that your legs are heavy at the start of your run and to need a few miles to get warmed up. But by mile 4 or 5, things hadn’t really improved yet for me, and I knew then that I would just have to grit my teeth and bear through this one. Things started to go downhill from there: my stomach began to bother me (hello, nausea: I haven’t felt that on a run in over two years), a headache started to form, and the sun finally did come out, and it happened to come out just when I hit the really exposed part of the trail.
So… not the funnest of runs. I can’t count the number of times I wanted to just turn around, call it a day, and get ’em on the 20 miler. But I stuck it out and at the very last turnaround with 3 more miles to go, I spotted my friend Mara, and then, Leah, who just last week had twisted her ankle, but miraculously, was fine to run yesterday. Together we, along with one of our training captains, Rich, ran the last 3 miles of the run, enduring fatigue, tight hamstrings and calves, and nausea. And when the finish finally came in sight and we saw–and heard–our teammates cheer us in, it was a sweet, sweet relief.
18 miles done. 20 miles in 2 weeks. 26.2 in 6 weeks.