THE ADJUSTMENT PERIOD // THIRD TIME'S THE CHARM
Yesterday’s soul crushingly hard 4 mile run made it painfully obvious that it is going to take some time for my body to adjust to running outside.
While it was better pace-wise and pain-wise than my first outdoor escapade on Sunday, it was still pretty sucky and a definite blow to my ego. The only real bright spot that took away from it, was just how motivating seeing a cute dog can be. That’s it. And, even seeing a cute dog at around the 1.5 mile mark didn’t take away or do anything to numb the physical pain that I was dealing with. Or, the mental battle that was ensuing in my head with each painful stride that I took. All I could think about, was how this type of situation would have been a no brainer like 5 or 6 months ago. The minute the pain got to be too much, YOU STOP. You take a walk break, cut the run short, and do everything possible to prevent destroying your body anymore than you already have.
Unfortunately, I was in no mood to do any of those things. There was nothing fair or normal about how hard this run was, and the last thing I wanted to do was give in, make the situation even more stressful and unfair. So, I pushed myself to get in 4 miles. And, then was in a pissed off mood and intense pain for the remainder of the day. On the plus side, being super emotional and upset post run helped me to lift some pretty heavy weight during my 90 minute weight lifting session…so I guess it wasn’t a completed an utter waste of energy?!
Then, I had to accept the fact that not every run these first few weeks back to the pavement is going to be spectacular or even fun.
Which, for someone who loves running outside as much as I do, was an extremely hard pill to swallow. So, I did everything I could think of yesterday to make today’s run better. Less awful and more enjoyable. This morning, I made a last minute decision to swap out the shoes I have been running in for the past 4ish months for an old, slightly word pair of shoes that I haven’t ran in since early November. It was a risk, but far less risky than throwing on a pair of brand new running shoes and trying to break then in “on the run.”
There was something about those shoes that felt off, from the very minute I laced them up. They felt way too loose, and had virtually zero ankle support. But, I somehow convinced myself that switching up my running shoes just HAD to be the answer to my problem. IT JUST HAD TOO. The idea of having another mediocre and pain filled run was just too much to bear. So, I took off with these new/old shoes, and a new/old running playlist filled exclusively with Ariana Grande and Cassadee Pope songs.
Although, I still dealt with a lot of muscle soreness today, there was a HUGE difference in my pain level and how fast I was able to run. Huge. Ginormous. Unrecognizable compared to yesterday’s lackluster performance. Even looking at my splits now, almost 12 hours later, it’s hard to fathom how I was able to perform so well, when just 24 hours ago I was questioning every aspect of my running ability: from my pace, to my form, and even my drive. Sure, I had moments of pain/discomfort, but nothing compared to how my previous two runs went. I never felt like the pain was holding me back or making me overly cautions.
I guess it’s true what they say, the third time really is the charm.
I ran 3.44 miles at an average pace of 9:23!!! On top of that, not a single mile was in the 10 minute pace range. The only real flaw or downfall with today’s run was how fast my mile 1 time was. 9:08. Definitely not an ideal pace, especially for when it comes tor running longer distances like 5 or 6 (and eventually 7 or 8) miles. And, then there was the whole seeing another person out running and almost colliding with them/nearly having a heart attack at the sight of another human being out exercising at 5 a.m.
I just cannot say enough good things about this run, and how much of a mental boost it was/is for me. The minute I saw my splits post run, my confidence went through the roof. Happy doesn’t even come close to describing how I felt. I know this is only my 3rd run outside, and I shouldn’t get too excited or cocky…BUT I seriously cannot wait to put up more fast times and run my first 6 miler later this week. Who would have thought, that simply lacing up an old pair of running shoes would be such a game changer?!?