Well, my toes never stopped hurting. After completing the first of three 6.2 mile loops, the pain in my toes had become pain in my entire feet. I completed one more mile before I gave myself permission to walk for a while. Even walking, my feet hurt. I was beginning to realize that my shoe selection that morning was a big mistake, but it was too late; I had promised myself I would complete 18 miles.
I walked and ran the second loop, and walked most of the third. Every step was excruciating by that time. I needed more water and I was hungry. I realized I really need to research a liquid food supplement for my long runs and for the marathon. I also need a utility belt of some sort to carry supplies and to get the right equipment so that my feet are protected.
The only compromises I made this time out were to save myself. I couldn’t run on my feet because I was in too much pain, so I took a cut-off, shortening the last loop from six miles to five. I also knew I still needed to walk home, and technically the walk to and from the park would make the trip more than 18 miles. By the time I left the park I wasn’t sure I would even make it home.
I took off my shoes in the elevator, which brought my feet immediate relief, and thought to myself, “I have to get rid of these shoes.” I drank a lot of water, ate some food and decided to take a hot bath in epsom salt to ease my aching muscles. Even my shoulders hurt. After soaking, I crawled into bed and moaned for a while because I couldn’t get comfortable. Eventually I slept.
When I woke at 6:30 I was still sore, but better. I had dinner plans that evening with friends so I got up, got dressed and hailed a cab. That’s one nice result of the training, I’m really amazed at my recuperative powers.
I learned a lot from this experience. Sometimes in order to keep your commitments, compromise is necessary. A wise person knows the difference between procrastination and a sensible surrender. Not every surrender is a defeat. Because of that difficult run on Saturday, I now know how important equipment is. Being prepared is an essential part of completing any task you set for yourself.
I also know that Central Park is the best training there is. While I failed miserably at trying to run the 6.2 miles loop three times, I ran one loop today at my best time ever. I cut my best time by three minutes, and it was easy. Nothing before had ever made that run easy. No matter how much I ran when I was away, that 6.2 miles was always difficult. Today it belonged to me.
I’m going to keep attempting my long runs in the park as often as I can. I know it’s the best way to get ready for my goal of running—really running—the marathon.
September 3, 2010
I’ve wanted to do a marathon since I lost weight and regained my health by becoming a vegan and learning to juice fast and cleanse. I’ve been training for about 10 weeks now and I’ve gone from not being able to walk more than a few blocks without pain to running several times a week. I run because it’s the most efficient exercise for me. Losing weight can do only so much for a body that has been abusing food for years. To tone and firm you have to be fit.
I started running again about two years ago. I started by walking and I wasn’t sure I would actually be capable of running again, but pretty soon I was doing a base run of a little over three miles in Central Park. But, that was it. I couldn’t get beyond two laps of the lower loop of the park. I just couldn’t conceive of it.
I figured the only way to do it was to push myself. I needed to give myself a goal. I guess 26.2 miles is overkill but that’s how I do things; I’m an "all in" kinda girl. So, now I’m committed to completing a marathon. I used to run a couple times a week and maybe get in another run on the weekend. Since I started training I’ve added at least two more runs to my week.