Let’s Talk Training: Running and Emotion

Tuesday workout(s): 5 mile run with Andrea and her pup Juneau + 10 Mile Hill-Training bike ride with P and his new bike

P loved my bike so much, and was tired of riding his swanky mountain bike on our long road rides, that he picked up a schnazzy old roadie to pedal around on with me and use as a commuter. We went for a short ride at dusk and had a blast!

Andrea and I started off the evening right by going for a little jog with her pup Juneau. She just got a promotion at work, so I used that as an easy excuse to bake something! I’ve been on a baking spree, ha.

I made her SkinnyTaste’s  Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake.

I also whipped up a Boston Cream Pudding Pie and my Oma’s amazing quiche recipe for Phil.

The cheesecake is relatively healthy, the quiche not so much. Sometimes you have to make the rich version of something amiright? I had a small slice and it was amazing.

One of my favorite parts of not being on a diet anymore is not being so hungry I could eat a horse, which made binges during baking or “Oh, I’ll just have a taste” which turned into a taste x20 and half the batter/icing etc. a real issue. I can bake and cook without munching along the way which makes me really proud.

Let’s Talk Training:Running and emotion.

 Recently I helped a friend run a new PR distance. She is training and wanted someone to carry her water/gels and keep her on pace for her Sunday long run. I needed an excuse to try a longish run again and test my pain level in prep for the 15k in 2 weeks and so we decided on a 9 miler up the coast.

This was our run: Some rolling hills, lots of sunshine and plenty of other runners

No walk in the park for sure, and she is a new runner– who hates hills. I was nervous and excited to help her push through 9 miles for the first time. I really hoped that by the end she would still be my friend. We settled on a 10 min pace (I was going to shoot for 9:45 because I know she had that in her) and we finished HARD and with an avg pace of 9:48. Because of Garmin weirdness we had to run about 100 yards farther than intended and when you are sprinting into the end of a long run 100 extra yards is hell (EHEM rock and roll vegas with your false finish). At the end of the run my friend doubled over and cried… all out emotional overload. I bet every runner out there is reading this and they totally get it. When you push yourself to that point, everything hurts, your whole body is screaming for you to stop and you push just a little bit harder sometimes everything just spills over.  I cry during or right after almost every race or really hard run.

I finished my first 20 mile run with Phil at a beach, I took my shoes off, scoped out the chunks of skin that were missing from various parts of my feet and promptly walked into the ocean on wobbly legs. My voice cracked as we hugged it out and I teared up. I was SO freaking proud of us. We did it. Through all of the injuries that led up to the marathon I remembered that 20 miler and knew if I could do that, I could do anything.

Or a 93 year old woman… amazing 

I’ve been running a race and I’ll see an older runner, maybe a woman in her 60’s or 70’s, out there, doing it… and I totally lose it. I can only imagine the strength she must feel in accomplishing something so huge at an age that most people associate with deteriorating body and health. It makes me really reassess the things I complain about.

Bottom line: running is emotional. I experience blood, sweat and tears in most weeks of my training and it has made me truly appreciate the amazing things I have conditioned my body to do.

I try really hard to love my body and let those emotions flow when they hit me. I acknowledge them and work through them, channeling the emotion into energy(when I can) and think back to those moments when I’m struggling later. Runners are weird, we pee in the bushes, intimately know what it feels like to chafe everywhere from armpits to ankles, are sock elitists (psh cotton, not on your life), cry during the Olympics and can’t remember what drinking on a Saturday night feels like.

 It’s a whole different ball game and some people don’t get why we push as hard as we do, why we get up at 5am to run before work.

I can guarantee, though, that if everyone could feel what any athlete does when they accomplish something big, a new distance, a heavier lift,  a finish line crossed, we wouldn’t seem so crazy anymore.


5 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Training: Running and Emotion

  1. I LOVE this post :). Running is emotional and really allows us to reflect. Marathon training was an enjoyable experience for me because of the emotions involved. Proving to ourselves that we are so much stronger than we initially thought is such an awesome thing to witness. Thanks for brightening my day :).

  2. Loved it!!! It was an embarrassing moment, but I could not think of anyone in the world I would rather shared it with (well maybe Kev)!!! Thank you Ash!!! PS: I am so famous on your blog now ;o)

  3. Great post! I’ve definitely had those moments where I’ve just lost it after (or during) a long or particularly hard run, but I ALWAYS end up feeling better than before. PS. I love your bike!!

  4. First time commenter, also living in SD 🙂 This post definitely struck a cord with me. I definitely lose it after a race or hard workout and have since high school. Just so much built up emotion. I actually ran my first half this past weekend and watching a blind man cross the finish line definitely made me reassess what a true challenge is. Thanks for the inspiring post!

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