So, I'm going to walk you through a scenario. You've just signed up for a race. You've trained for it. You've prepared. You've done everything you could to be as ready as you can be. Then race day comes, and blam. Rain, snow, humidity, any of these. Funny, the one thing you didn't train for was weather. I didn't want my experience at the Baltimore 1/2 to go like that. I want to be like a Boy Scout, always prepared. So despite the ungodly heat and humidity this morning, I decided to go have a run. Who's to say that that fateful day in October when I run 13.1 miles will not be like today? Exactly. No one. So I figured, today would be a great day to train. Humid and digusting. At least then if the Baltimore 1/2 happens to be on a really humid day, I can understand what to expect and how my body will react. In theory, this idea is wonderful.
So my master plan today was to strike out and run four miles. 2 miles down, 2 miles back. The farthest I have ever run is about 3.5 miles, so I figured it was time to start stretching the length of my runs. 4 miles didn't seem like a far stretch from where I've been so I decided to go for it. I even picked what I thought would be the perfect spot, The Dyke Marsh. Oh I know I know, the word Dyke makes you all giggle like 8th grade boys, but it's the name of a really pretty area just along the bank of the Potomac, near Fort Hunt Road. There is a path that winds through the marsh and continues along the GW Parkway all the way to Mount Vernon. The path also heads north along the Potomac all the way up towards, and I think, past Reagan. It's really pretty to run along. So, my plan involved me using the mile markers along the trail to keep track of my miles run, and help me with pacing. Well, I failed to realize that the first mile marker was about a 1/2 mile away from where I parked my car. Oops on that one, so automatically I had a 1/2 mile walk to warm up with.
Well, once I hit the mile marker, I struck out and started to run. I immediately regretted this idea. My legs were burning from the front squats yesterday. We didn't use much weight but my posterior chain was on FIRE. I made it through the first mile with about a 12:30 pace. Considering the tightness and the heat, I figured that wasn't too bad. During mile 2, I started to loosen up a bit. My strides felt stronger and when I hit the mile marker I realized I had dropped my pace to 10:00 just about even. Now, here's where I hit the snag. After mile 2, I should have turned around and headed back for my car because that would have been a total of a 4 mile loop. Well, my ingenius self thought, well let's just run 3 miles down and see what happens. Well, I hit mile 3 and realized that I was still on pace at 10:00. I was pretty stoked that even on a day like today I hit just about a 5K in 35 minutes. That was pretty solid work.
But then, I realized I needed to turn around and get back to my car. So, I decided that since I had 3 miles to repeat, I would walk mile 4. By this point, my hip and left knee were throbbing. Had my car been beside me, I probably would have listened to my body, happy with the 3 mile day and called it a day. But, since I wasn't anywhere near my car, I couldn't stop. I kept walking, and hoped that I would get back to my car soon. Well, at the next mile marker, I decided I would run. It was excruciating on my hip, but I just kept going. I had to stop and walk a few times, but I kept plugging along. Not very fast at all, but I kept going. I hit the mile marker and mile 5 (4 of running) was about a 12:30. I was thinking again, not bad all things considered, especially the fact that I have never run over 3 miles. So I just kept going. At this point, I figured, the sooner I get back to my car, the sooner this is over, and damn my hip cause it hurts.
Well, my last mile was about 12:30 again and at the mile marker where I started, I stopped running and walked the rest of the way in. That last 1/2 mile walk from the mile marker was nearly unbearable. I'm sure the other people on the trail wondered what in the Bejesus I was doing, but I really needed to stop and stretch a few times, which involved sticking my spandex clad butt high in the air, which I'm sure also amused the drivers along the GW parkway. Great.... :P It's also at this point that perhaps I should tell you that since I had yet to do laundry this week, all my workout shorts were dirty, and I was forced to wear pants today. I was already getting tons of looks from people, who I'm sure were wondering if I am a glutton for punishment by wearing pants in this heat, and to that all I can say is, dude, I CrossFit. What do you think? So, all along my run, and also at the end, I got tons of strange looks. Ah yes, just a normal run would be too much for me. :P
Now, once I finally hobbled back to my car, the first thing I did was drink water. At no point during the 7 miles did I drink. That was a bad idea. I didn't have a way to carry it, so I didn't, but boy I really could have used it. So immediately after chugging half the bottle, which is definitely a no no, I sat down to stretch. Wow oh wow. I really think I did myself in. Something is really wrong with my hip... or, well, really, my buttocks to be more specific, and even more, my left one. I definitely was overzealous with the 7 miles. I really need to be careful with my increases in distance. Overdoing it at this stage and hurting myself could keep me from running for awhile, which could really hurt my chances of being prepared for my race in October. So, I need to really listen to my body from now on, and stop when it says "ow". Yeah, I know, I'm really bad about that. :( But I've iced and taken some Advil, so hopefully I'll be good to go for CrossFit in the am. If not, I'll probably still come in anyway and cheer everyone on. You know me... I just can't stay away... :) I love CrossFit like a fat kid love cake! :) Tehe...