Confidently approaching a 2.5hr run

Monday runs are always the long ones. They range from 2 to 3 hrs 30 min. Initially, I dreaded them, they were impossibly long and difficult. Neither my mind nor my body were conditioned for the duration or distances. This morning, I looked forward to a 2h 30min zone 1 run. It didn’t seem too long, or that it would be very difficult. 

To avoid dealing with the heat of the day, Cruz and I began shortly before sunrise. We kept an easy pace and stopped to refill our water about 1hr into the run. I was still feeling strong and very fresh at that time ~mile 5. 

I noticed that at miles 6, 7, and 8 I still felt strong. In those moments, remembered when 2 miles was a struggle and 7 was damn near inconceivable. 

Around 8.5 miles I noticed that my legs were getting heavy and I was having trouble cooling down. I had already changed my shirt and wrung the sweat out of it once. The ambient temperature was rising quickly too. I knew I was approaching the danger zone because I didn’t stay diligent. 

Consequences of overconfidence

At mile 9, I had a choice, head back to the car and end the run early, ~1h 50min, or do another 1-mile loop then head back to the car.

I really wanted to quit at mile 9, I was hurting…so I opted to do the additional loop.

The real growth is in pushing through the suffering and coming out on the other side knowing you can. Cruz was hurting too and she agreed that we should go the extra mile.

We did another 1-mile loop then the 1-mile path to the cars and it was torturous. I felt like I was overheating and the clock was ticking. My mind was looking for ways to lose its composure and come up with a strong enough reason to make me stop running.  

Not only did we run to the finish, but we also increased our pace significantly. We told our minds to shut the fuck up and we finished strong!

However, I was beginning to dehydrate. I got behind on my fluid intake and it’s impossible to get caught up. I fell victim to a common mistake of amateur athletes. Which is, enjoying the feeling of feeling good and neglecting to stay on top of my nutrition and hydration until it’s too late. Had I been in a longer race, I would have fallen apart. 

…Always respect the distance