Back in the Saddle, So to Speak

Writing on a lovely fall evening in my beautiful city! I can’t even count how many times I’m running and I see the city skyline and just revel in the beauty of Chicago – don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved my ten years in Washington, but I feel so lucky to live here now!

Anyway, I think I wrote about my crazy tummy troubles after my 20-miler; it took me a good several hours to feel back to normal on Sunday afternoon. Yesterday I felt absolutely fine all day and into the evening, but just after I got into bed my stomach started cramping up – and stayed that way for HOURS. It was really uncomfortable and I didn’t know what to do – I know I could have taken something but I just feel like it’s better to ride that kind of thing out. Which was fine…except that it really didn’t let up until 1am-ish, so at that point I emailed my supervisor and said I was staying home sick today.

I slept in and woke up feeling better, not great, and went about my day – pretty much just stuck to the couch. By mid-afternoon I was feeling a million times better and decided I was well enough to tackle a run – my 8-miler mid-week run.

As soon as I started I knew it was going to be rough; my breathing was all over the place and it kinda reminded me of my Cape May runs – feeling like I was putting in a ton of effort but not really making much progress distance-wise. I definitely panicked. I tried to think of all the reasons why it could be a tough run and cited lack of sleep (even though I did sleep in this morning, it still wasn’t my usual amount of sleep), the weird stomach bug, not eating enough before the run (I didn’t have my oatmeal until noon-ish and didn’t get on the path until 4), and feeling a bit dehydrated (normally I can run a fair distance before I want water; today I was ready after 20 minutes!).

And then it dawned on me – hello – you just ran 20 miles on Sunday! Of course you’re going to have tired legs! I guess identifying the culprit helped because I continued to plug away. I thought many times about calling it at 4 or 5 miles (the other distances I need to run this week), but I felt like if I quit early I wouldn’t want to make it up another day. I was in it for the long haul.

Somehow I made it through. I kept telling myself that the hard runs are the ones that count the most because they’re forcing me to maintain my staying power (such as it is!) and to put my fears away – namely “if I can’t run 8 miles how on earth am I going to run 26?”

I guess I wasn’t the only one in this boat because I got an email from my pace leader afterwards – she said her run today was a total struggle too! So that made me feel MUCH better.

That’s all for tonight! Tomorrow I’m hoping to do 4 miles on the treadmill at the gym and I’ll wrap up my mileage with 5 on Thursday morning, hopefully. Also hoping my stomach sorts itself out – some people get colds or the flu, but I am totally prone to tummy troubles, and always have been. At least I’m used to it, I guess!

Have a great night, friends!


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