Saturday, August 11, 2012

Blood, sweat, and tears…a short novel about the truth of an 18 mile run!

What it looked like when I left
for our 18miler last week!

Okay, there wasn't really any blood, but there might as well have been! My training run last Saturday was brutal to say the least. Let me first say that there were a few circumstances that might have made it that brutal. The first one is that in the past month I have not put in the training work. I ran 16 miles before vacation and then I was gone for 3 weeks and did not run once. You might ask why didn't you run on vacation? Well, this was my first Mommy and kid vacation and because of that I had no one to watch them.

Once I came home thankfully my home sold! Suddenly, I became even busier with packing a house, trying to catch up at work all while trying to entertain the kids. I know, excuses, excuses! So, I ran one time consisting of 4 miles and then I ran 18 miles! Yes, this is confessional. I feel like I know what some of you are thinking, “Well you deserve it then!” and others of you are thinking “Wow, thank goodness she is normal and can’t fit it all in all of the time!” Well, I think both thoughts are true! J

Although, I truly blame the hard run on my lack of training I think my training partner Stephanie whole heartedly would agree that it was the hardest run she has ever completed and she NEVER misses her training days. I do believe one other component may have been the culprit, too.

THE HEAT!! Our run temperatures and humidity were THROUGH.THE.ROOF! At the peak of our run the temperature was in the mid 90’s and 99 degrees with humidity. UGH!!!

We started the first half of our run at 6 a.m. with a nice group of friends! We got through the first 9 miles with ease and Bekah met us to complete the last 9 miles. Our group separated at this point and Heidi, Laura, Deb, and Trinity went on to finish their training route. Many of our friends made PR’s on Saturday. It made it a very special day! Laura, Trinity, and Deb did 10.5 m. for the first time and Holly did 6 m.! Woot! Holly left a bit earlier on the route.

I call these ladies the double-digit girls!

We hydrated along the way with our packs, hydration bottles, and belts. Surprisingly, we  had already consumed all of our packed hydration. We stopped at this point (mid-point) to refill from our cooler that Steph strategically placed on the training route. Yes, these are the things you have to plan when you are on a long run, hiding coolers! This is the first time we noticed that we did not have enough hydration with us as we emptied the cooler at this stop. Luckily, our friend Laura volunteered to fill us up after she finished another mile and a half. She was a lifesaver that day!!! Our group separated at this point and Heidi, Laura, Deb, and Trinity went on to finish their training route. Bekah, Stephanie and I then ventured off to complete the last 9!

Our cheerleader, Bek!
Bekah jumped right in and we went another 4 miles with ease. Then the temperatures rose with the humidity making the last 6 miles excruciating to say the least. We drank, we GU’d, we Gatoraded, we Nuun’d and no matter what, it was a slow go. Bekah was our constant cheerleader and Steph the fearless leader.

As we kept chugging along we stopped and borrowed a few sprays from the sprinklers as they hit the sidewalks. At mile 14, I vividly remember feeling like dirt. My calves and feet hurt terribly. Bekah said, “Only 4 left! You can do 4 miles!” Of course I thought, I know I can!!! I chugged along slowly. Steph kept going a bit ahead. She was a rockstar!

As the sun beat down I felt like I was in the dessert. We turned onto another trail and I walked a bit. Then I would run a bit. Then walk a bit and run a bit. You get the idea. At mile 17.4 Bekah said, “Come on Sexy Mother Runner you got this!” and I burst into tears and said “I CAN’T!” Followed by, “Who’s stupid idea was it to sign up for a marathon?! Why in the world would I pay $150 to do this crap!!!” Yes, I am slightly embarrassed to say this is all true. Then I looked at her and said, “And, why in the heck are you here?” “You don’t have to do this!" Then we both busted into laughter!!! Anyone who knows me knows that I have banned the word “CAN’T” from anyone’s mouth in my household (along with stupid, fat, plus the Lord’s name in vein… just to mention the top 4!) and I hardly cry.

The last .6 mile was ridiculous. It felt like it took forever. As we turned onto North Knoxville I told Steph to be careful that she might get hit by a car coming into the turn lane and she said “I think it will feel better than running any longer!” We all laughed!

We turned into the parking lot and went up a street. Bekah said, “Your almost done!” Then I almost puked. No freaking kidding!!!! The hot and cold chills ran up and down my arms. Then we laughed as she said, “Puke there! It is public property!”. OMGosh!!!! Needless to say, I did not hurl and laughed hysterically instead. Thank goodness. I got a small, extremely short-lived burst of energy and sped up to finish the last.03 miles. Thank-freakin-goodness!!!! I ended at the cooler! A picture was taken and Bekah picked us up to take us to our cars.

Steph our fearless leader & amazing friend!
I am so happy to have completed this run with her!

As we arrived to our cars there was a GIANT blow up slide next to Steph’s car and white slips on our cars. I instantly freaked out and thought we all received parking tickets, but we were pleasantly surprised to receive two awesome notes from Heidi and Trinity saying “Good job” “Your awesome!” Seriously, they are the one’s who are awesome!!! More laughs were exchanged over my freak out!

So, this was a special memory for all of us! Our friends made PR’s earlier in the day and were along for the first half of our journey. Bekah saw me cry for the first time, say I can’t, and Steph and I completed an 18 freakin’ mile run!!!! We celebrated by meeting Steph’s husband Joe (A fellow runner who gets it!) by hobbling into One World for brunch. He laughed at our “rodeo” walk and the whole training run story. Yes, we looked and walked like we had been on a three day cattle drive. Then we ordered more food that would actually fit on our table. Many doggy bags came home!

Am I happy about our run? Yes, because the bonding with friends and stories shared were priceless. The memories made will never be forgotten. Plus, the lessons we learn from training runs are gold for our races.

Next up a 12 mile taper training run this morning, then the BIG 20 next week!!!! Until then…

Happy Running!


Have you ever had a really bad run?!


  1. Don't know you, but "been there, done that" and I am proud of you for doing it too! Keep running!

  2. Thank you and thank you for saying that. Sounds like I am in good company!:) I always figure tell it how it really is...the good, the bad, the ugly..., but never give up! Best wishes on all of your runs, Kim! :) ~Danyelle