Monday’s run was terrible. I had high hopes for hitting 5 miles, but set a mental minimum of 4, yet I couldn’t do it. I had to stop at 3. Why? Because my legs were burning so badly, I couldn’t contemplate another mile. I hadn’t actually felt this spent during a run in the past three years, so I had to consider why it was happening, and I had to listen to my body.
To be fair, I had run 4.5 miles the previous Monday, 3 miles fast on Wednesday, and then walked all day at the Texas Renaissance Festival on Saturday. Sunday morning, Sherry and I rode 9.3 miles on our bikes, and then I set out for a long and slow run on Monday. It seems like I was being too aggressive, and my body was screaming at me. I tried to push on. The extreme soreness actually started when I hit mile 2, but I pushed onward to at least complete 3 miles. Then, I stopped.
I took Tuesday off, and today, I feel much better and prepared to hit another four mile run this afternoon. The weather should be nice enough, and my legs feel strong enough. I’m hoping to hit at 10 minute/mile pace or better, but I’m not pushing it. At this point, I’m trying to hit distances, not speed. I work on speed during my 3 mile and less runs.
The lesson in this is while we all set goals and we work hard to meet them, it’s important to listen to your body to avoid hurting yourself. I probably could have pushed to go to 4 miles, but at what cost? And for what good reason? There were none. Now, I feel rested, ready, and able to hit 4 miles tonight. I’m actually looking forward to it.