Today's run was an 18k LSD. When I woke up after a late night, my first reaction was to hit snooze on my alarm. Our bed seemed so cozy and warm, whereas getting up to go run outside wasn't all that appealing.
But then I remembered my post from the yesterday, and how inspired I'd been after my yoga lesson. I can't on the one hand write about inspiration and on the other decide to hit the snooze button and lie in bed because I was up too late the night before.
So I tried to turn off my brain and the negative self-talk that was telling me to stay in bed and go for a run later in the day, and instead tried to focus on how lucky I was to be able to head outside for a long run, and on how much I would enjoy running and chatting with friends and fellow runners. I knew that once I got started, I would be glad I had gotten up and headed out for that run.
Arriving at the Running Room, I did indeed see many friendly and welcoming faces who seemed happy to see me there. So instead of plugging in both earbuds and focusing on my music, I turned to them and started chatting away.
The roads were very icy, though - the theme of the week. It had snowed, then melted, and snowed, then rained, and a thin layer of ice coated the sidewalks.
Because I was chatting, I wasn't entirely paying attention, which meant that all of a sudden at about kilometre 4, I lost my footing in the middle of a sentence and fell to the ground with a loud "whoop!" that sounded much louder and dramatic than I actually felt hurt.
Our pace leader, Wendy, asked how I was doing and kindly told me to take some time to let it all sink in - because I might be in shock. The rest of the group seemed to be more in shock than I felt, partly because my "whoop" had been so dramatic. I was a little stunned, but more embarrassed than anything. But everyone was super kind and made sure to ask how I was doing, checking to see that there was no obvious bleeding or rips anywhere.
Beyond a couple of bruised knees and a scraped palm, I was fine, though. Although it was tempting to turn around and head inside - the roads really were treacherous - and grumble about how bad the run was, instead, I turned back to chatting with my friends, and the kilometres ticked off gradually.
Until we were at kilometre 17, and Eye of the Tiger came onto my iPod (I still had one earbud in).
I was tired, and my legs were heavy, but I knew it was partly because of the fall and another part because of our staggering gait on the icy patches.
I remembered Stephanie's words from yesterday: I could be achy, tired and miserable. Or I could just be achy and tired. So I focused on the energy in the song and enjoyed the little boost the music was giving me, almost singing out loud to the lyrics. I knew too, from previous experience, that it's the tough runs that are super training for race day, when I'll likely be just as tired and exhausted but will need the mental stamina to continue.
And I finished that run.
My legs are tired and achy now, and my knees are sore and a little bruised, but I'm happy I persevered. I know I would have beat myself up if I'd let myself quit too soon.
One more long run down before race day!
Hope you're all staying safe out there, folks.