Learning From The Negatives and Embracing The Positives Of A Painful Long Slow Distance Run.
I managed a 14.1 mile run today which I loathed from start to finish. It was just one of those runs where a single negative thought would arrive into my head and I’d be battling it half a mile later.
The run wasn’t all bad though. I was ready for giving up at 13 miles again but I somehow kept with it and ran to 14.1. I emptied my mind of all thought and concentrated on putting one leg in front of the other.
I was running on fumes at the end, but I got home in one piece!
Why did the long run suck so much?
I’m guessing that the run was so difficult as a result of the 9.1 mile run yesterday. I put too much into the last 0.5 mile and my body hadn’t recovered properly from it.
It’s a little bit disheartening as the 15 mile run last week felt so good. I foolishly thought I had the long run mastered.
But I obviously don’t. I have so much to learn before I can even begin to consider myself even an average runner.
I’m not going to get better by being negative though. There are a lot of positives to take from today’s run and the past week in general.
- I exceeded my own expectations for the long run again. I ran 14.1 miles instead of the 14 miles I had set out to do.
- I covered 41 miles this week over 4 runs. I could have only dreamt of running 40 miles over only 4 runs up until a fortnight ago. I’ve ran 40+ miles over 4 runs, 2 weeks in a row now.
- My body has been feeling very strong over the mid distance runs. If I push my 9 milers up to 10 milers then I won’t panic so much during my long runs. These runs will only continue to get easier if this trend continues.
- In my Belfast Marathon 2012 training I only managed one run further than 14 miles. I’ve already managed 2 and it’s only the start of February. There’s nothing stopping me making it 3 next week. I just have to remain consistent and not disappear to Portugal and Spain again, 2 weeks before the marathon.
- My running finally seems sustainable now that I’m only running 4 times a week. This time last year I was running 6-7 times every week and was constantly on the verge of burnout. Getting up at 5am twice a week isn’t a big ask.
- I know that I’m one step closer to running a comfortable marathon after today’s run. I could have given up at 6 miles and went home but I didn’t. I seen it through and although it wasn’t fun, I got there. I’m in the best position I’ve ever been in as a marathon runner.
- This was the first time that I truly hated a run in 2 months. When I started running I hated every jog. I’ve come a long way in terms of attitude since then.