I've got to be honest, I have been working my ass off this winter. I have swam, biked, ran, and strength trained my way into great shape. I have improved my diet. I have completely given up alcohol. My body is lean and fit (and my jeans are falling off to prove it). And I am ready.
And FYI, I have not neglected my little guy in any of this. He's #1. Running is a hobby.
Yesterday I did my longest run that I'll do leading up to my marathon - 20 miles. My parents helped me out by watching Anderson for a little bit while I got started and then Dave picked him up after he got off work. The plan was an hour of warming up and building pace, then three half hours of progressively fast tempo, followed by a cool down to complete the mileage. I am a slow starter and like to build my pace. That's how I roll. So, I was surprised when my first mile was under a 9:00. Then it kept getting faster from there. I kept telling myself to chill out, slow down, be comfortable. I was comfortable, though, and easily breezed through the first hour. The next half hour felt pretty fast too. Again, I was telling myself to slow down that I didn't need to be going that fast. I was comfortable so I just went with it. Then, I thought, things would get tricky. The second half hour was supposed to be at race pace. I have some pretty big goals for this race. Big Hairy Scary Goals! My motto for the marathon is Fearless and that is how I approached this workout. I destroyed that next half hour and picked it up another 10 seconds per mile for the final half hour interval. Unfortunately, I ran out of daylight with about 2-1/2 miles left. I was able to return to my parents' house, grab my reflective gear and headlamp, and head out in their neighborhood. I am a little skiddish about running in the dark. I always fear that I'm going to fall. I slowed down considerably. That's okay, though. I completely my quickest 20 miler I have ever done in training.
You'd think the story would end there.
After I finished the run, I quickly gathered my things and headed home. It was nearly 9:00pm; I hadn't had dinner yet; and I wanted to say goodnight to the little guy. I didn't take time to calm down or get any recovery food/beverage. It felt very dark outside as I climbed into the car. About halfway home (which is all of a four mile drive), I started to get really cold and lose feeling in my hands. Then I started to get pins and needles in my ears and jaw. I was feeling sick and I opened a window (it was in the low 40s outside, maybe even 30s). With one turn left and less than a mile I didn't think I was going to make it. I prayed the light would turn green and I could make it home. My vision was starting to blur and tunnel. I parked the car in the garage, got in the house, and asked Dave to help me immediately. I felt like I was going to pass out or be sick. I laid on the ground and Dave propped my feet up. For several minutes I laid there shaking like a leaf, freezing, and scared. Only twice have I felt that way - when I was pulled off the course at Ironman and right before I had my cesarean. Finally I was able to get my breathing under control and make it to the bathroom. Dave had started a shower for me. (The baby was asleep through all of this.) Dave helped me into the shower and soon I was feeling warm and normal again.
That's not all!!!
I don't sleep very well after big workouts. I hurt, my toes don't want to touch the sheets, I feel restless, etc. This night was no different. I hadn't eaten much dinner (didn't feel great), so I was only starting to feel hungry when I crawled into bed at 11:00. Midnight, 1:00, 2:00. Still awake. At 2:30 I got up and ate a little bit and drank some fruit punch. Calories. Any calories. I watched TV until 3:00. I tried to sleep again for another hour. I turned on the TV again at 4:00 and watched until 5:00. At 5:00 I crawled back into bed and still felt terrible, so I went back out to the living room. Finally I fell asleep at 6:00 and was unfortunately was awoken just an hour and a half later by thunder. Thunder?!
I'm dragging today and quite sore. But I'm excited. The training is paying off and the finish line is in sight. I'm ready. Bring it on.