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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Why Was That Long Run So Hard?

After last week's amazing 10 mile run...I was ready for another one just the same! just didn't happen this time. Why? Why was this run so hard? This question played through my mind the entire run.

The run started out tough like always. The first 3 miles are always tough for me. But I had my audio book playing in my ears and I was as focused as I could be. But I just wasn't feeling it. I was tired. I felt like I didn't have any energy. I wondered, "Am I getting sick?" I was just counting down the time until I would be meeting my Sole2Soul mile 5.5. It seemed to take me forever to get there but I finally did.

Once I met them I quickly fueled up with some Honey Stinger Chews. I hoped these would help me find my energy. I had 4.5 miles to go...and I was leading the training group so I knew I had to be strong for them.

But the run was still hard. I kept fighting with myself to slow down, to walk, to quit. Quitting is never an option for me. But at mile 7.5 I had to take a walk break. And for the rest of this run...that's what I did. I ran for a bit....and then I would walk for a bit. I just really didn't feel good. I was so tired...and I had zero energy. But I kept fighting. And seeing the number 10 on my Garmin was the most amazing sight!

This horrible run was finally over! But then my tears began. What had happened? Why did I have such an amazing long run the week before and this one was the total opposite?

I quickly dried up my tears so my Sole2Soul Sisters wouldn't see them. I congratulated them on their amazing runs! For most of them it was their first time running 4.5 miles! I was so happy for them!

My friend Donna, who is a seasoned runner, had come out to run with us and support the training group. As she started to leave I walked her to her car. And then I just started crying! I couldn't keep the tears in! I was so devastated over my bad run! Donna was an angel and just listened. And then she took me to Dunkin Donuts for some chocolate milk to recover!

So why was this long run so hard???? There could be several factors:

  • It was hot! The temperature was about 10 degrees hotter than last weekend's run. With the heat and the higher humidity....the run could be harder.
  • I had started decreasing my calorie consumption earlier that week. Like I mentioned in my Weekly Chase post, I have started watching what I eat and how many calories I consume. Donna and my husband both think I didn't have enough calories to fuel me through such a long run. And I didn't carb like I normally do before a run (no pizza the night before!). 

So...what do you think? Why was my long run so hard?

QOTD: Are you a long distance runner who is also on a low calorie diet? How do you balance it all? What do you eat to fuel your runs?



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