Saturday, November 12, 2011

How'd we celebrate 11.11.11? Running Moms Run!

For a few months I've complained that I just can't seem to get back into the groove of long training runs. Getting out to do 3-5 miles 5 times a week hasn't been a problem.  But we all know that the most important run of the week is that long run.

I think part of it is the fact I feel so pressed for time, all of the time.  I get into a nice long 4-5 mile run on the treadmill at the gym and the daycare center calls me to come do a diaper change.  I get 4 miles into a road run and a kid calls or texts me needing something.  My inability to do a long run is coming from my lack of focus and, ironically enough, stress.

I've also been increasingly nervous about taking the baby out on anything longer than a 40 minute run.  "What if she starts crying 4 miles from home?"  "What long run route has side walks?"  "Do I really want to run 8 miles pushing her?  And her stuff?"

The other day, however,  Steena tweeted a cool idea:  Let's Run 11 on 11. A light bulb moment! I saw that as my opportunity. I had absolutely NOTHING planned between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Friday.  Why not run 11 miles.  I began to gear up, mentally, for this long run.

We runners are special.  Working our selves up is a critical part of our training.  We start thinking about our long run.  We fantasize about it.  My favorite part of thinking about my long run is mapping my route.  Knowing that I'd have to push Isla made it a bit of a challenge.  We live out in the sticks, and so there are large portions of our roads that have no side walks.  But the notion that I'd once again be able to run past some of my favorite sites was getting me excited.  I began to mentally pack BOB, wondering what she'd need.    By Thursday evening I was as giddy as a 5 year old on Christmas eve. 

After we dropped the big kids off at school on Friday, I fueled up with a Venti Americano (hey, it helps the asthma, okay?!) and a banana.  I let Isla get her run on and play hard for a bit while I did some tasks.  By 11 (incidentally naptime), we had BOB packed and were out the door.
Running for a few hours with a toddler requires a lot of crap.
Within the first mile Isla crashed out cold.  I knew she probably would, considering we'd had 11 minutes of sleep the night before.  And within that first mile I was into it.  My mind was focused and sharp.  It was beautiful to be out in the wonderful Texas weather.

It was windy.  My shoulder was hurting more with each mile I pushed against that wind.  My hand went numb by mile 9.  But I wasn't stopping.  And in the end....we did it!  We ran 11!  On 11.  And that's just the beginning.  I now know it's possible to push the BOB for a long time.  And I'm only inspired to do more!