I got up this morning mentally trying to find a way out of running.
This kind of sucked because I had made a conscious and clear choice to not run last night so that I could force myself to do a longer outdoor run this morning.
Weather radar showed rain coming so maybe I should just do a shorter run on the treadmill instead of a longer run outside? But if I looked honestly at the radar I could tell that the rain was mostly going to miss us anyway.
I eventually got myself out the door (with a bottle of water this time!) and was getting rained on before I got to the end of the street. Just a light rain though so I wasn’t able to convince myself to stop.
I then continued on from there at an easy pace and got to about 1.25 miles in – at this point I could make a right turn and do my standard 4.45 mile loops around the neighborhood or I could continue out on an out and back stretch that would mean I would need to do at least 8 miles.
If I did the standard loop there was a good chance that I would convince myself to stop after one lap and not hit my goal of getting a double digit mile run in again finally. (I haven’t done one since the Spruce Woods 50k in May.)
In the end I was able to force myself to go on the out and back knowing that I would get at least 8 miles and depending on how I was doing around 7 miles in I could make an adjustment and get closer to 11 miles.
I kept my pace fairly slow and steady and really didn’t need any walk breaks until 7 miles or so – that was a nice surprise.
Thankfully around the 7 mile point I was able to convince myself to not take the short way home and stop at 8 miles and continued on a path that would take me to the double digit mile zone.
Still getting off and on rain at this point and at around the 10 mile point it was coming down pretty good. Since I was now over 10 miles, I decided that I had accomplished my goal and headed home.
In the end I got in 10.75 miles in around the 2 hour point. Definitely not fast compared to what I have done in the past but the real victory was that I got out there and did the miles.
I have to keep reminding myself though that just because I could do it better before it doesn’t mean I can now. I can get back there but I need to rebuild and that means not comparing myself to past me except as motivation and not as a way to get frustrated and stop.
I have a bit of a mantra…”Run your own race!” basically meaning run to your own abilities and training and the victory is not in beating the other runners but in doing your best. The issue with this now is that the other runner in this case is me…but me from a few years back. I can’t just discourage myself with “I used to be able to do this” but instead build myself up with “I will be able to do that again!” and take the steps necessary to get there from where I am now.
My hope is now that I have broken that 10 mile point again that I have pushed through whatever mental barrier I have been fighting with doing the longer runs. I think the next few longer runs will still take a lot of coaxing to get going but now that I have set a precedent it should be easier.
Now I have to follow my rebuilding plan to get stronger for a decent fall race or 2 and build a base for more dedicated training for Dopey Challenge in January!