Have you ever walked outside in wind so strong you had to put your head down and literally force yourself to move forward? That defines the conditions of Andrea’s and my pace run this morning. We started out this morning feeling great- in fact, Andrea even commented that it felt like we were going downhill and we were amazed at how calm it was, given we had 40mph winds gusting through last night. Our 1 mile warm up felt like a breeze- literally :).
Then, we turned a corner to start our 4 miles at pace (between 8:12- 8:20) and wham! We were hit by a blast of wind, continually rolling in. The first half mile didn’t seem so bad. I noticed we were slightly slower than our goal pace due to the wind and picked it up. By the end of that first mile at pace, neither of us were talking. We were breathing. Heavily. I managed to spit out a comment about how much this run sucked. Andrea, being encouraging, called back only less than 1 more mile to go against the wind! So, I trucked on. With every step, I felt like a rag doll being tossed around in the wind. My legs felt wobbly. My head was starting to spin. I had this picture of my favorite rag doll, Betsy, from when I was little just floating next to me, turning around and floating up and down, like a leaf next to me. I felt like I had no energy left and began to wonder how in the world I was going to make it 3 miles back home once we reached our turnaround point. Luckily, Andrea asked if we could stop for a minute and take a breather when we hit our halfway point. I shouted yes! yes! So thankful she was needing a break too.
We hit our halfway mark, stopped our watches, and tried to catch our breath. I felt like I could puke right then and there. My head was still spinning and now my insides were churning too. I slowly walked a little further to “shake it off.” Once we returned to our stopping point, we started our watches and off we went. With the wind at our backs now, we were quickly up to a sub 8:00/mile pace. It felt like we were flying! Conversation picked up again. These last 3 miles were gonna be cake! Then, a mile in, I started sucking air. Audibly. You could actually hear me wheezing. I was tired out. I had my first training session with my coach last night to focus on strength and my body was revolting. Only 1 more mile left at pace- I pushed myself and kept an eye on my watch to make sure I didn’t slow us down. Andrea exclaimed that she felt WAY better coming back. I just said I was glad one of us did! She reminded me it was all in my head. She was right. My head, but also my legs. Finally, we reached mile 5- the start of our cool down. I asked to walk for a few seconds to get my breath before starting the slight uphill back to my house. As we got going again, I felt like walking. If it hadn’t been for Andrea’s company this morning, I would have cut the run short, giving up due to the wind and I would have walked my cool down. I’m so thankful to have running buddies who push me and remind me of my strength in my weakest moments.
When we reached my house, that feeling like I could puke had returned. I knew it had been a very good run and I was excited! The sign that you’ve pushed yourself hard, pushed yourself beyond your comfort zone, is the feeling like you could puke after.
As I stretched out and started to get ready for the day, I had this immense feeling of joy bubbling inside. I felt tough. I felt happy. I did it. As I started my work day, I had so much energy, it was hard to focus! I felt like I had suddenly developed ADD and could not sit still and concentrate on even simple tasks! It probably didn’t help that I rewarded myself with not one, but TWO cups of coffee with my delicious homemade pumpkin spice creamer. I deserved it :).
And here’s why. As I mentioned, last night, I completed my first strength workout with my coach and it literally kicked my behind. We did a functional fitness workout. And here’s what I took away from it: I. AM. A. WEENIE. That’s right. But I know this. And that’s why I’m starting these workouts. I told him a while back that his job is to beat the wimp right outta me. Well, he didn’t waste any time. It was, in the very least, humbling. There were moments when my legs literally would not move. We were in the middle of a set of pop ups, and my brain was telling my legs Go! and they were shouting right back NO! I had to muster all my strength to pop back in plank position, usually with a small grunt. And when that didn’t work, I slowly dragged one foot at a time back to starting position. I feel like I kept up ok with the rest of the exercises. The pop ups did me in. After our last set, I was apologizing. He just laughed and said in no time, I’ll be able to complete that workout with ease. Well, here’s hoping! And here’s our workout if you want to give it a whirl:
10-jump squat burpee left/right
10-mountain climbers/plank jacks 4 ea.
10-plank jacks/pop ups 4 off ea.
10-squat touch downs
10-trpl lunge forward,curtsy,back
10-plank hand to side
10-side V crunch
2 sets of 10 and 1 set of 5