Friday, April 29, 2011
Yesterday, I woke up fatigued. It felt like I drank a bottle of cheap red wine for dinner and promptly went to bed. I quickly realized that I was fighting a different dehydration. With the increased heat we are experiencing in Los Angeles and the added extra exercise, I did not nourish my body properly with water.
The most difficult part of training still remains me, as I’m sure it is with all runners. It is difficult not to look at my Garmin and say, “I should be running faster,” or “I used to be able to be at this spot by x time.” The park I’m running at was the base for my first training, and thanks to an Eagle Scout project, the distances are already calculated… outer loop 1.3 miles and the inner loop is .5 miles… Running here, I know I can run a 5k by doing a combination of outside and inside and get my suggested daily mileage. In my early training, I did this without a Garmin and just focused on mental math. It’s difficult to go slow and I feel like I should be doing better. These three miles are two, three minutes slower than my “normal” three miles. And even though I want to berate myself and say I should be better, better than what is the question. Sure, if I didn’t take the winter off or have life-changing surgery, I could be running at a faster pace. Giving myself the grace to run slow has been one of the biggest challenges. I keep telling myself that it’s not about the pace, it’s about the distance, and speed will come. Naturally, these are words that have been spoken to me since I took up long distance running three years ago.
The milestone has a larger mean than just being a convenient part of our vernacular- They’re constructed to provide reference points along the road. They reassure travelers that the proper path is being followed, and to indicate either distance travelled or the remaining distance to a destination. Each consecutive day I’m able to run, I look at as a milestone, and each of those days contains a milestone in its own right with each time my Garmin rolls to an additional mile.