This week in some ways was better than last week, but in others was, well, not worse, but not as great.
I was actually on time for this run. In fact, I was about 10 minutes early, so I was able to casually sign in, greet people, warm up a little, and listen to what the coaches had to say, so that was good. However, I was feeling a little off. Frankly, yesterday was not a great day for me physically. My stomach was a little upset, I was abnormally tired, and I just felt drained. I knew that part of it was that my electrolytes were imbalanced (I was craving Gatorade like never before), and I tried many number of things to make me feel better, but I was just off. I was feeling better towards the evening, and I just prayed that I'd feel 100% by the time this morning's run came around. I wasn't.
While I was much better, I was still worried about my stomach. Had we only been running 3 miles, it wouldn't have been a problem, but 10 miles could have proven to be problematic. Our route actually had us run within a quarter mile of the kennel, though, so I knew that if I had to stop I could. So, as the run started, I went with it. I ran with two of my running buddies, but I was really having trouble keeping up. It wasn't so much the pace as it was just being around people. I found I was having a lot of trouble processing what was being said, and I was having even more trouble coming up with responses. My head just felt fuzzy, and when you're on the first mile of a 10 mile run that's not really good. I actually mentioned something about not being in much of a talkative mood. So, for a while, I just kept quiet, tried to keep a decent pace, and tried to focus on what my body was telling me. All I was getting was, "I don't feel well" and I feared I would have to back out of the run.
Then, at around the 3 mile point, I saw salvation. There, in front of me, was the blessed SAG stop! I was shocked I'd made it to 3 miles and still felt decent enough to keep running, but I was THRILLED to see SAG. I had Gatorade with me, but the opportunity to stop and have some cool water or Powerade was much appreciated. Today, though, they had more than water and Powerade. Today, SAG had snacks! I was surprised when I looked at the display of pretzels, gummy bears, and jelly beans, and my body screamed, "PRETZEL!!!!" I guess I needed some more salt. I grabbed a small handful to see how my body would react. That pretzel was the most blessed gift. It was manna from Heaven. I only had 3 or four, but that bit of food helped me out a lot.
The second SAG was only about a mile later, but I wasn't passing up on any help this week. I got some more to drink, and this time I had just a few gummy bears. While not nearly as amazing as the pretzel, the brief bit of chewing seemed to be helpful. On we went.
By this point I was back to my regular chatty self, and the only issue I was having is that my bladder felt a little fuller than I would have preferred. Oh well. This, at least, was not an emergency. We ran passed the field behind my kennel, and I waved (I still love saying "my kennel"). Then we turned a corner heading towards base.
The rest of the course was more psychologically challenging than anything. There was one more SAG, and I had some jelly beans, but after that, most of the run was part of my Tuesday morning route...a route that leads me back to my house.
The sun was now up, it was getting hot, I was tired, my Gatorade was almost gone, and my legs were really starting to fatigue. We ran past roads that would have lead me to friends houses where there were bathrooms and couches and air conditioning. One of the houses I could actually see, and I almost stopped. Then we ran passed the road that would lead me home. It was less than 2 miles away, and I technically would have gotten my two miles in if I'd turned. This is where running with friends is helpful. I just kept chatting and thought about the ice pop waiting for me at base. On I continued.
I finished 10 miles in about an hour and forty five minutes, and I felt wonderful! Compared to last week, I walked less. In fact, I only walked a few steps the entire time. I had overcome that icky feeling I'd had since yesterday, and I still ran. Plus, I ran 10 miles!! Who would have thought that I'd end up running 10 miles?
Now, I feel great mentally, but I'm tired. I'm at the kennel the rest of the day, but I'm looking forward to bed time. All in all, not a bad day!