January 9, 2012

Long run loser

After my first half marathon on Nov. 20, I really didn’t have a desire to run. After a week break, I finally got back into the groove (for the weekly speed workouts, anyway). But, I just couldn’t muster any desire to do a long run.
I’d try and would run 3 miles and call it quits. My longest run during this time was 6 miles. And, it was miserable. I probably walked half of it. I kept telling myself that next week would be the week I’d complete a long run. And, next week came, and I couldn’t do it. A few miles were OK. But, anything much more than 4 miles was getting into iffy territory.
As with all running-related issues, I started evaluating why I felt this way. And, I came up with a few reasons:
  • I’d accomplished the goal I worked so hard for (completing the Women’s Half Marathon), and I lost my drive.
  • With holidays, visitors and travelling, running took a back seat.
  • My last long run was the half marathon race on Nov. 20. Because it was hot, miserable and didn’t go at all like I hoped, I lost my love of the long run.
I think all of these played into my lack of desire to run a long distance. But, I think the last reason probably played the biggest part.
I used to love long runs. We lucked out with the weather for most of our long training runs for the half marathon. The weather was fairly cool (for Florida) for most of our longer distances. The training was working, and I could run a longer distance each week. After a rough 7-mile run one week, all of my runs were pretty glorious. I remember loving two 10-mile runs. They were just completely enjoyable. Then, this blasted half marathon came along and ruined everything. It was hot. It was humid. It was awful.
I'm only smiling on the outside.
Every time I thought about a long run from that point forward, I remembered that terrible run. And, I hated it.
With the holidays over, the visitors gone and the traveling done, I decided this past Sunday was the day to do a long run.
First step, tell my coach that I really sucked it up in regard to long runs. I really didn’t want to admit that my training was turning into a big pile of failure. But, I did. And, I felt better already. So, instead of running the 11 miles (yikes!) on my schedule, my coach suggested a 6-8-mile run. That sounded doable.
Second step, show up and run. At 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, I met my group for a still undetermined number of miles (but between 6 and 8) run.
The first few miles were kind of rough. My first few miles of any long run usually aren’t the best, though. So, I kept going. At the 3-mile turnaround point, I decided to keep going. The run still wasn’t a masterpiece by any means, but I’d gotten in the groove. I went another 0.5 miles before turning around. The last 3.5 miles were easier than the first, and I’m so happy I finally ran a non-stop 7 miles. And, my time was almost exactly the same as my (better) 7-mile run during my previous training (1:21). I’ll take it!
I have a tendency to take a turn to negative town, so part of the run I was so disgusted at myself for not being able to run the 11 miles on my schedule. But, toward the end, I felt happy for getting back out there and tackling a long run. And, replacing my last miserable long run memory with a pleasant one.


  1. :) Good job!! You're not a long run loser, I think bad runs like that tend to deter anyone from staying on track, and you're not training for the half anymore so it's even easier to skip the long runs. Just keep gettin' out there! :)

  2. @Happy Healthy Runner I think it just took that one good long run to get back into the groove ... or that's what I'm hoping. :c)


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