"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? ... So use every part of your body to give glory back to God..." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Thoughts of Defeat.

"For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me." Job 3:25

Time is closing in. The questions, the insecurity, the worry comes in waves.
"Can I do it?"
"How bad is it going to hurt?"
"Can I withstand the pain?"
"Am I strong enough?"

There are just things I can not prepare for, like 17,000 feet. Cloudsplitter is going to kick me in the teeth. NO DOUBT.
It comes down to me being able to take the hit, multiple times.

For weeks now, I have put myself in the hurt locker.
These BACK TO BACK long runs are really hard on me.

SUNDAY was just Andy and I. It is his long run day, like a good wifey I ran it with him. I was very submissive and let Andy pick the route and lead.
That was my biggest mistake.
I let Andy take us 5 miles to Holdridge, then run the West Loop with the Technical loop and Lakeside loop, then back home.
The problems:
  • 82' degrees
  • Hills, a lot of hills
  • Pure sun down Grange Hall
  • Andy increased his miles and increased his technical route.
We both biffed it on the trails. We were going up a hill and I said "Ok, I am up...And now I am down!" Andy screamed "Nita!" as I picked myself up out of the dirt laughing. Nothing broken, nothing hurt. I landed like a pro. I get hurt worse nailing my toes on the rocks.

Andy was low on water with 4 miles still to go. I dropped some Gatorade and gave it all to him. I ended up giving Andy the rest of my water to get him home. He bonked bad.
I think he got a little heat stroke. He got sick and wasn't right the rest of the day.
As he was riding the struggle bus home, I reminded him to remember how bad he felt. Then the next time he wants to quit remember he ran through worse. To remember the pain. To embrace it, to capsulate it and swallow it down to help  finish. I think he would have thrown me in the ditch if he could have caught me.

SUNDAY NIGHT. The worry sets in. Did I tear my body up too much? Can I do it again tomorrow?
SO I do EVERYTHING I can think of to PREPARE myself to run long again on Monday.

BUT NOTHING prepares my mind for running 30 miles.
I don't have Matt or Ken.
I am scared to run alone.
I am scared to run the backroads.
I am scared I can't do it.
I am just plain scared.

6am comes early when you sleep with leg cramps and body twitching. I am the worse bed partner there is.

My MIND instantly accepts failure. I decided I would only do 20 miles. Even though Rachel said she would meet me at 7am for over an hour of running, I still decided I couldn't do it today.
"I can just cut my miles back this week."
"I don't need another 70+mile week."
"I should just let my body recover from that horrific run yesterday."
"Nobody cares if you run 20 miles or 30 miles."
"Its gonna be a tough week, just cut back this week and pick it up next week."
"Its not safe to run alone, what if I get shot?"

Before I left the house, Andy asked me how far I was running. When I told him my plan and all my excuses he was shocked. "Really?"
I walked out the door keeping my game plan.

I drove my truck to Sherman Middle school. I would do loops making my truck a pit stop for water and nutrition. I would also check in here.
Rachel helped me with my hardest miles. The beginning is always the hardest. I have so much noise in my head. My body is achy and tired. I am trying to tread between my thoughts, the goals and my broken body.
Morning running is always the most adventurist. Together we saw 1 coyote and a handful of deer. The coyote looked right at us. It was pretty awesome. Its TRUE. It was a Coyote, seriously!
Before Rachel left me, she gave me a "Half marathon route" from my truck.
13 miles alone. Just get through this loop. Then I could quit at 21 miles.
I saw Lacey on my way down E.Holly rd. She stopped and checked in on me. I was already so sweaty and stinky. There was not a dry patch on my body.

My phone was blowing up. I was trying to run and check my messages. My Garmin shows my messages, making it a lot easier then having to pull my phone out every 5 minutes.
I saw one from Lacey. I checked it.
WOW! If I made it back to my truck and to the elementary in the next hour and a half she could run with me from 11-12. I had to pick it up.
Suddenly I realized I WAS GOING TO RUN more than 20 miles.

"I can do this."
"Stay focused."
"Get to the truck, check your time, eat, drink and GO."

I felt strong as I headed in for my second loop.
I had my music in my ears. I was so excited to have Lacey find a way to help me bring it in. As I ran into the parking lot, the lawn guys pointed at me with a look of bewilderment. "You are still running?" They were there at my first loop, and now for my second loop. I chuckled as I said, "Yeah, I just came back to eat, drink and take off again."
And 4 minutes later I was gone, heading to Lacey.
I had 22 minutes to get to her.
After a mile I knew I would be pushing it. During a walk break, I texted her to head my way.

It was 2.4 miles to where I met Lacey.
I was at 22.5 miles.
I had an hour with Lacey.
I was falling apart.
"Lacey, I am so sorry, these are going to be total junk miles for you today."
"Lacey, get me to the tree, then I gotta walk."
"Lacey get me to the the beginning of the next mile and I am going to take a walk break."
She was so gracious. I let her lead. I couldn't think. I was running in Holly and had no idea where I was. I was toast. I was literally running where I have lived for 15 years and had no idea where I was.
"Oh yeah, we are coming up on East street, I know where we are."
WE WERE NO WHERE NEAR EAST STREET! Lacey never corrected me. She must have known I was "One flew over the coo coo's nest."

I could have had her drive me back to my car.
"YOU can do this NITA, You are NOT going to QUIT."
I was beyond tired and sore. I had surpassed sweaty and exhaustion. Now it was do it or die trying.
I turned my music up, took a big drink, a deep breath and headed back to my truck.
I decided I wasn't just going to FINISH, I was going to finish STRONG.
With the Olympic marathon still fresh in my mind, I thought of Desiree. She was so far behind but she never quit. She just kept plugging along. Slowly, very slowly closing the gap. I just needed to stay strong. Quitting would be too easy. Walking would be too easy. I don't want easy. Easy isn't going to help me with Cloudsplitter in October.

I saw my truck. I still had a half a mile. "No one cares if you stop at 29.5". I DO. I ran that stupid parking lot until I heard the pretty little BEEP notifying me I hit 30 miles.

I was a mess. I smelled worse than road kill. My stomach was starving and sick at the same time. My clothes were soaked from sweat. But I finished.

I should have eaten better. I only ate a banana and a few chews. Which explains why I was having bad dizzy spells at mile10-18. I ran out of chews. I didn't plan it very well.
I will work on this better next run.

I am soo GRATEFUL to Rachel and Lacey for helping me with my hardest sections.

On an ending note. Defeat and failure start in our mind first. It is deafening at best. I decided early on I wasn't going to run my goal.
I was scared.
I was tired.
I was sore.
I had so many reasons and excuses.
BUT let me remind you the power of support. I am not sure I would have finished with out Lacey and Rachel.
I am so grateful for those who believe in my craziness.


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