Monday, November 9, 2009

The Comeback and Candy Corn Bribes

I'm still working at the running comeback, hoping to be ready for 26.2 miles of the White Rock Marathon in just FIVE weeks. YIKES!! Mentally I'm keeping the positive mindset that I will be able to participate in five weeks, but runs have been REALLY slow going this week. I tried for a 15 mile run on Katy Trail Saturday. I actually never knew I was capable of running that slowly for that amount of time-- it's quite impressive actually. lol. Typically if you try to run at a pace that much slower than you're used to it is actually very difficult to maintain. However at no point did I feel I could have gone faster, so apparently my new running pace is nearly 2 minutes slower than the pre-H1N1 pace. Hopefully that won't last forever...

I completed one lap on the trail, and then made a quick stop by my house to pick up some fuel-- candy corns! (a fun fall running snack inspired by one of my mile sponsors, Nelson Prater. Thanks Nelson!). The run continued to be really difficult and I was quickly losing motivation to keep moving forward. So, thankfully I love candy corn, and in desperation decided to use it more as motivation than running fuel. Running with plastic baggy in hand, every quarter mile I completed earned myself one candy corn. :) It seems crazy, but it worked. Using my candy bribe I talked my body into running 11 miles straight that morning. A little after 11, my back started to hurt enough I was worried it wouldn't be smart to continue, so I walked the last 4 miles.

Another nice surprise to keep me going that run was running into a lot of the DRC half-marathon groups doing their training runs that morning. So great to get so many encouraging shout outs from friends! :)

Sunday was a 6 mile recovery run, that felt only slightly better than the previous day's run. I got a boost of motivation getting to see the participants of the Breast Cancer 3-Day Walk all greeting their families on Knox Street that morning. 60 miles in 3 days I think they walk... very impressive!

Today's 6 mile run was another rough one. It's hard to believe that just a month ago I used to 'zone out' on runs and would lose track of time or distance. Today I was painfully aware of every step and every breath. But I kept going. It takes all kinds of different mental tricks to keep myself going on these runs these days. What keeps me going most is thinking about my sponsors and the cause I'm running for. To be honest, whether I'll be able to complete 26.2 miles in five weeks is still up in the air right now. If, in the end, I don't think I'll be able to participate in the race safely then I'll find another Texas marathon later in the year. But for now, this all just feels like the necessary pain of getting my body back in shape all over again. I'm not ready to give up yet! Let's just hope my candy corn stash holds out.... lol.

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