Our training plan has us running back to back longer runs typically Friday and Saturday. This week however Heather told me that I didn’t have to run on Friday, this wasn’t because I had put such a good weeks work in clocking up the miles. It was because we wouldn’t actually have the time to cover the required distance (17km) without waking up at 4am! I knew this day was coming but I still thought I had a few weeks before running would entirely take over my weekends. So how much is this going to cramp my style?
Saturday morning rolls in and it’s properly cold -21C with the wind chill but crucially there was no snow and the pavement was relatively clear. But even before a shoelace was tied or an ear warmer donned the run was off to a bad start. The avocados hadn’t ripened which meant no avocado on toast for our pre-run breakfast, for non runners reading this you may not get what the big deal is, but trust me it’s a big deal. We spend time experimenting with what works for us and how long before we run that we should be eating it, so you don’t want to be trying something new and worrying about how your body will react when you have already established what works.
The run however got off to a great start, solid steady pace, the cold was bearable and plenty of other runners out and about so we were feeling considerably saner than the previous weekends of snow running. So any worrying foreshadowing from the avocado incident seemed to have dissipated, with the exception of some pretty ripe vegemite burps all seemed to be well with the world. It was if course not going to be as simple as this. At 10km we decided to take a quick walk break and rehydrate a little, the water was frozen solid and the sport drink had turned into a slushy. Then just after the walk break at around 12km Heather’s knee gave out, typically she runs with a knee brace for runs over 10km but had forgotten on this outing to wear it, we were slowed down to a crawl. With the jog/walk cycle we were now in, we had lost 2mins per km, but through the pain and frustration Heather still managed to grit her teeth and close out that last 5km. This is obviously all the fault of the under ripe avocado, had we not had to rethink our breakfast choices I am sure H would have remembered her knee brace 😉
Holy crap, I’m still drunk, 6am time to suit up for today’s run and I still feel buzzed and dehydrated beyond belief. Never cool when you are chugging Gatorade before you have even set foot outside, on the plus side the avocados ripened up nicely! Today we had an extra running partner H’s cousin Roberta. A good job we did because the way I was feeling I would have crawled back into bed to sleep off what seemed like it was going to be a dandy of a hangover.
So what happened to this dedicated runner? How when I knew that I had to be up early could I possibly have ended up in this state? The slow pace of the previous days run had left me with a little still in the tank, so I took up an offer from Paul, my weight training buddy, to throw a few weights around and hopefully have some different muscle aches to take my mind off the leg aches during the next days 17km. Paul however is also a drinking buddy so the post gym pint was always destined to be more than that. The drinks flowed as did the conversation, both of which were only accelerated when we were joined by a couple of Paul’s friends. Fortunately H also joined us, which would help reduce my guilt the following morning. Reduced guilt or not the question is could I pay for my sins or would I be left behind at the side of the road with my dignity in a steaming pile of puke for company?
The first 5km were hellish I was cold and a little dizzy as I dropped behind the girls, my beer farts not only offended me they also seemed to be keeping pace with me. Fortunately Roberta shares Heather’s ability to talk while running so listening to the two of them chat those first kilometers away helped take my mind off the plethora of things I didn’t want to think about or just as importantly smell.
Then the next thing I knew were at 13km and I’m feeling great still smelling like a hobo’s unwashed boxer shorts but feeling great never the less. Bringing the run home considerably faster than the previous day and all semblance of a hangover sweated out over the kilometers, what more can I ask. So did I learn my lesson? As I am sitting here beer in hand watching the NFL championship games I would say I still have a few lessons to learn.
N.B. To add to previous “eye-cicles”, I can now add “snot-cicles”. Tenacious little stalactites took some detaching.