Rated R – for language

April 3, 2014

My Running

I “ran” a ten mile trail run on Saturday. And I had been dreading it for a while. I had not trained for it and so I knew there would be some suffering. I didn’t quite realize, though, to what extent that suffering would be. The day before, Friday, I woke up determined to cut my mind off at the pass….beat it at its own game…and start the positive thinking before I was anywhere close to the trail. Friday morning I decided I was going to “be a champion”. That’s what Mohammad Ali said:

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So I decided I was going to “Be a Champion….” even though I did not train specifically for hills….Well here I am, “being a champion”, at Mile 2:

And that was only at Mile 2. I had just come up a couple of steep hills. My mind was in full gear. Already!!! After a couple steep climbs, there came the rolling hills. That just kept rolling and rolling and didn’t seem to stop.

Here I am at around mile 3.5:

I decided to video myself so I could see and hear how my mind speaks to me. I was really shocked when I played the videos back. Wow. I mock me quite a lot. And I also seem bipolar. After the hills the trail flattened out a bit. It was much more do-able for my untrained legs. (Or is it my untrained mind?)

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In this moment….I loved being on the trail. I loved that I had signed up for it. I loved that I had shown up for it. This was probably the best part of the run, running alongside that mountain. It was just beautiful.

Mile 5:

This part of the run was really quiet. Really peaceful. I turned my music off and listened to the stillness of the trail. I was doing it. I was trail running. Oops….I mean trail “running”. And then after this quiet, fairly flat part of the run, I came to a fork in the road. There were two signs. One saying “to the 2nd loop” and one saying “to the finish line”. I had a choice. I could end this run with 7 miles under my belt. Or I could take the 2nd loop and go for the whole 10. Who would know? It was an un-chipped run.

I would know.

So I went for the 2nd loop. Which meant those killer steep hills again. And here I am, after starting the second loop, and re-doing those hills. Around mile 6.

This trail run was so hard for me. Brutal is the only word that comes to mind. But so does “undefeated”. My mind tried to take me under. But I ended up finishing. I ran. I walked. I hiked. I even cried. My knee was hurting. But I kept going. Out of 38 Ten-Milers, I finished 36th. It took me a little over two and a half hours to complete. And I have a finisher’s medal. Because I finished. I know at mile 9 I was running but seriously could not feel my legs. And it seemed that the finish line was just never going to be in my line of vision. I kept looking for it. At every turn. Every dip. Every nano-second. Come to find out, my Runkeeper tracked me at 10 POINT FIVE miles. That POINT FIVE was the nail in my self-imposed coffin.

I was invited by the trail series group to go back and train those hills with them. They are out there every weekend. I told them I am nowhere NEAR where they are at….they told me to go anyway. So I will do that.

I finished. I stretched and sat for a while. And took it all in. And I promised myself that I would never run again. While up in those hills, I swore to myself: This is it. I am retiring from running. I am done. I’m never doing this again. Take that, Mohammad Ali!!!!

But when I sat there in the shade with my finishers medal around my neck, surrounded by other trail runners recovering from the run—I knew I would be back. Stronger. More durable.

(Then I went to boot camp two days later and did sprints as one of our circuits. And just the movement of running made me want to barf. And then I “re-decided”, I am DONE with running. My blog name can change to “iRunOnPurposeNOT.)

Chino Hills was by far the hardest thing I have ever done.

But I’ve done it.
(insert smile here)

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About rsouleret

I am a mother of two beautiful girls. I work full time. And I run. ILML.

View all posts by rsouleret

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