Today was the day that everything that has been going on in my running life turned around and gave me the kick in the backside that I have been needing.
First, the humidity has finally broken. On Monday, I only ran 8 miles, not the 10 that I wanted, and barely got through that because I went out when it was too hot and humid. Because of that, I’ve been worried about running 10 to 12 miles today. However, yesterday’s downpours brought much cooler temperatures. Ah, relief!
My new Saucony’s are officially broken in. I wore them on Thursday and Friday nights, and I laced them up without apprehension for this morning’s run. My feet feel so much better.
And, I finally found the courage to try my new asthma medication. I started it on Friday, figuring that 2 full days would be enough time to adapt; my lungs are feeling turbo-charged!
So, this morning, Skipper (on his bike) and I left the house at 7:30 for my long run. Little Ironman woke up just as we were trying to sneak out, crying to come with us, promising to be good… I just can’t push him more than 7 or 8 miles anymore so we had no choice but to leave him with a tired Daddy.
Halfway through the run, Skipper, who was raised on Thomas the Tank stories, asked if we could cross the train tracks on the way home. Well, I had to keep the waterboy happy so I agreed, knowing that my run was quickly becoming longer than 12 miles.
After crossing the tracks, we only had 2 miles left. I could tell, though, that my nine year old was tired and about to hit the wall; that worried me. We crossed over the highway and, then, I promised him that we would stop at the convenience store for some cold water (and I hoped that they sold Aquafina, his favorite bottled water). Skipper questionned this when we still had water left in our bottle as it did seem like a waste. He was right; it was, but it gave him something to look forward to, and we both needed that – for different reasons.
It’s amazing how something as simple as a bottle of cold water can create a focus. When we got to the store, not only did I pick up a bottle of Aquafina, but I grabbe an Aero bar – his favorite. Really? What Mom in her right mind would buy her child a chocolate bar at 9:00 in the morning? Me. Skipper had a long, long hill to climb to get back home.
And, he did. After 1:50 minutes of running (plus stops) we finally arrived on our driveway, only to be greeted by my 4 year old who announced that we was ready to go for a run with me. Rather than changing my drenched gear, I pulled on my older, worn running shoes and ran one more kilometre around the block with Little Ironman. What a great cooldown!
At lunch, Skipper and I spoke about training and the mental toughness that goes into long runs (and, in his case, bike rides). I explained that today was hard but, if we do the same route next week, he will find it a lot easier. He’s still with me.
Then, I reminded him that if anyone asks what he did on the weekend, he can proudly tell his tale of riding 13.5 miles before 9:00 on Sunday morning. That’s my boy!
Me? I ran 13.5 miles when I didn’t think I’d be able to handle much more than ten. I had no breathing difficulties at all. My feet didn’t hurt. I’m pumped about heading into the next few weeks of 13 to 15 mile runs and continuing to build towards the marathon. Life is sweet!