Always Darkest Before The Dawn Run?

I think I’ve tried to write something on here a dozen times now but end up deleting it all because it’s all so negative. My training isn’t going well. Lots of reason. If I explained them all it would reek of complaining. But it’s not so much complaining as just explaining things. Like when you say you can’t go swimming because you broke your leg last week. It’s that sort of thing. Not a complaint, really, but a fact.

Let’s see… how ’bout an update. It’s been 9 days since my last long. Oh jeez, that sounds like a confession. Well it has been 9 days and within that time I’ve done two 4-mile runs. Pathetic. I skipped my long run this past weekend because spouse was out of town and I had to take care of the kids so I couldn’t get outside for a run and was also furiously working on papers for school which kept me up all night long multiple days. It was only a 12 miler that weekend but still. All those add up and they’re important. And yet I still didn’t do it. I didn’t have it in me to crank out another late night treadmill run, especially not with the every-two-hour wake-up plan my kids had me on for days.

They say it takes a village to raise a child? I think it takes a village to train for marathons. And lately I’ve just been floating on a life raft miles from shore with my laptop and textbooks. This morning was the first time I was able to run. Husband got back home, after being out of town, and was able to get the kids ready and take care of them in the morning while I cranked it out on the treadmill for 6 miles. It felt so good. I was worried I wouldn’t even remember how to do 6 anymore. I’m afraid to hope for this week, but I think I can crank out a good 4 days of morning runs and get my mileage to a really respectable number now that I have some help with the kids.

I have the dreaded 18-mile run this weekend too. To say that I’m scared about it is an understatement. On my 16-miler, if I had stopped my watch every time I stopped running to shout profanities into the air and curse the marathon, I could have shaved 5 minutes off my finish time. That doesn’t really have anything to do with anything. Just a fun fact for ya. But my point is that scheduling isn’t my only problem. My runs haven’t been that great and I seem to be carrying a lot of marathon hatred on my shoulders as well (pretty sure that’s displaced school hatred).

I may have to do my long run partially on the treadmill this weekend too. I’m still not sure about my husband’s schedule yet, but outside of that there is a rain issue here. It’s been raining all the time. And when it’s not raining, like when there is a lull in the downpour, there have been swarms of biting bugs everywhere. It’s just a hot, humid, buggy wetland lately. I was talking to some woman I only just met and somehow running came up. Told her I ran. She said “I used to run… when I lived up in Connecticut. But after I moved down here, I just don’t. It’s not nice to run down here.”  …. Annnnnd there you have it folks. It is not just me. I meet one random stranger and that’s the first thing she says to me when we talk about running?? Yep.

I’m trying hard to visualize landing in DC in 5 weeks to prepare for the race. I’m trying to make myself give a damn about it like I used to. But it’s pretty hard lately when you’re so busy and when work and school grind you to a pulp and spit you out every day. I notice my whole body feels like lead on my runs. This is going to be such an ugly race for me.

Sorry to end negative! I’m still hoping for a turnaround in training, even in these last weeks! Darkest before the dawn, right?! As bad as it ever gets or feels to me, I somehow can’t give it up. I am lining up at the start line October 25th! How many runs I’ll have between now and then… you know, it doesn’t matter. The last few years, all my race medals have been medals for showing up and working hard even when things got hard. They weren’t medals for time victories. I have to remember that.

despair inc

… i hope not

2 responses to “Always Darkest Before The Dawn Run?

  1. I’m so glad I’m not the only one trying to crawl, scratch, and flop through these training runs because of work, kid schedules, spouse schedule changes, and a general lack of running enjoyment. The good news is that we just have to keep moving forward, that’s all there is to it. I’m throwing the watch away, the expectations of a PR, and I’m just going to move forward until I cross the finish line.


    • You’re are definitely NOT the only one!! It’s so hard isn’t it? I’m glad to hear from other people who are juggling all of that and still trying to crank it out. And, no, I don’t think that’s an ideal environment to foster a love of running. Ugh! I completely agree about the “moving forward” plan. That’s all there is to it. Move forward until the road ends and someone hangs a medal around your neck. It truly is that simple. Or it can be if we eliminate certain expectations.


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