Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New Shoes

Opening a kennel and training for a marathon at the same time is really hard work.  While every publication and training journal says I should be getting at least 6-8 hours of sleep a night, the kennel often dictates that I only get 4 (and I generally prefer 8-9).  While the kennel requires long hours and hard work, training sometimes means that I have to arrive later than I'd like or that I'm too tired to move at the pace I'd like.  Somehow, I'm making all this work (I like to say it's because I'm full of awesomesauce), mostly because I have awesome people helping me out.

Still, though, some things suffer.  For instance, a few weeks ago I gave up my Tuesday training runs.  I needed to spend a little more time at the kennel, Tuesdays are always the shortest runs, and I just had to miss them.  Luckily, I didn't feel this affected my overall training too much.  I was still able to complete the distances, and I felt OK.  What did suffer, though, was my mental stability.  Wednesday-Sunday was fine because of my runs on Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday, but by Monday I was craving a run.  Tuesday usually found me anxious and cranky; unable to think straight.  I was always in a panic on Tuesdays, and I knew it was because I had not run (or gotten any real form of exercise for that matter).  Do you know the best thing to motivate me to run?  New shoes!

After my half marathon (can you believe I just wrote that?) on Saturday, I decided to reward myself by heading off to Charlottesville and getting some new running shoes from a store I wanted to check out.  I tried on about ten different pair and I finally chose a pair that were completely different from what I had been wearing.  I could hardly wait to put them on.

My lovely new shoes

By yesterday afternoon the majority of my Saturday soreness had worn off, and I was ready to run again.  I couldn't bear the thought of waiting until Wednesday to run again, so I decided I would fit in a run this morning.  The best route?  While a little longer than I'd prefer, from the house to the kennel would make a perfect early-morning run.

First of all, Holy New Shoes, Batman!  These things definitely felt different, and they took some getting used to.  Second of all, water-retention is a terrible thing.  While I've made a concerted effort to stay well-hydrated, and while I felt great after my half marathon (I said it again!), this run was far from easy.  I was stiff and sore.  My new shoes are heavier than my old ones, and my feet felt like they were encased in lead.  I was tired.  I'd set out with the thought of running 7+ miles just because I could, but I quickly found that, today, I couldn't.  I made it to 3 miles and stopped to walk.  I loosened my shoes and tried to find the right fitting, and then I started jogging.  Finally, FINALLY I found my groove somewhere around mile 4.5, but I was pretty worn out by then.  I cut out all my extra loops, and I made it back to the kennel in 5.5 miles.  Then it was a quick trip to the gym for a very brief weight routine and a shower (luckily the gym is only .5 miles from the kennel).

While this run may not have been my best ever (far from it), I'm still glad I did it.  Buying new shoes made me want to get out there and run instead of becoming complacent and figuring I'd already done enough.  Plus, I never would have done that weight routine if I hadn't gone for a run.  So, new shoes=run=weights=healthy day.  Hurray for new shoes!

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