Thursday, March 26, 2009

what's in you wednesday

This is going to be a brutally honest post.

I. Am. A. Big. CHICKEN.

I went running two weeks ago this coming Saturday. Before the run, a sports nutritionist addressed our team of 100 members. She stressed the importance of adequate fueling and hydration on the longer runs. Everyone was directed to drink plenty of fluids - and we were told to consume some kind of fuel, like a Power Gel, every 45 minutes.

Following the nutrition instruction, we were led through some stretches and then, we all set off on a 12-mile run.

After I had completed two miles, my legs from the knees down were completely asleep. I stopped and peeled off the brand new compression socks that I had bought, took off my shoes, rubbed my feet for a few minutes, put my compression socks and shoes back on, and took off running again.

Fifty. Maybe one hundred yards later, I couldn't feel my feet again.

So I decided to walk. And walk. And whenever I would start to run, my feet would promptly fall back to sleep, so I would walk. And walk. Apparently, I sipped a lot of water while I walked. Not because I was particularly thirsty, but because I was holding a bottle of water in my hand and at some point, I noticed that I had unconsciously consumed the entire thing.

Although I had been off to a great start and had been keeping up with the more seasoned runners, soon I began to fall back. Eventually, I was passed by every single person on my team. Even the three women who announced to the group that it is their goal to lose over 400 pounds across the three of them.

Because I had been doing so well with my hydration, it was just a matter of time before I had to use a restroom. That immediate feeling of my bladder about to EXPLODE, hit me suddenly, when I was at the five-mile mark.

Our course had taken us along the boardwalk at the beach and a quick check of my surroundings made me realize that there was no where to stop. There were no bathrooms within the immediate vicinity and when I looked at the course map, I realized that my closest bet was at least a mile ahead. So, I did what any rational woman who has birthed four children would do. I started looking for a big sand dune to hide behind.

But when I couldn't find one, I jumped off the boardwalk and started desperately trotting up surface streets. Was there a port-a-potty somewhere?? Do I knock on someone's door?? Do I squat in someone's flower bed?? Do I drench myself and then go jump in the ocean??

All of these thoughts crossed my mind.

Ultimately, I decided to back track to one of the aid stations where I had seen a restroom.

Ultimately, I decided to keep back tracking to the starting point and the team barbecue that was scheduled to begin in ... 20 minutes.

Ultimately, I only completed eight miles. Of which approximately six were walked.

But ultimately, I decided that that was good enough.

Since that time, my workouts have been seriously sub par. Of course I could provide a host of good reasons why I haven't managed to go to the gym more than twice and hit the pavement only once. The situation with my dad has been tough. Work has been extremely busy. The kids have all been sick and I've wanted to spend as much time with them as possible. And my feet fall asleep when I run. And running more than three miles really hurts.

Unlike laying on the couch and eating a bag of potato chips.

The one time I went out running with Charlie, Elizabeth was yelling in to her megaphone, "Daddy! Wait up!! Don't leave us!! Mommy is sloooooow!!!"

My mother thinks that I am out of my mind to even attempt a marathon. Every time I talk with her on the phone she tells me that I'm crazy. "The heck with that! People aren't meant to run for 26 miles. People who are LACTATING aren't meant to run for 26 miles. You've given birth to four children in the past four years. You are CRAZY to be running 26 miles. CRAZY. I think that you should run one mile and then jump on a train to the finish line. Jen, no one will ever know."

I couldn't believe my ears.

My very own mother was suggesting that I pull a Rosie Ruiz.

Which, seeing as I haven't worked out for more than two hours since my twelve eight-mile jaunt where I dang near wet myself, I'm beginning to think her suggestion might not be a bad idea.

That's right.

I'm contemplating cheating at my first marathon. But I don't want to get to the end too fast. So perhaps I'll stop and have a beer or two. Or maybe a hot fudge brownie sundae.

And then I'll dump a gallon of water over my head and run across the finish with my arms over my head.

So, um. How are you doing with your goals?


  1. GO ROSIE GO.. {Just don't win the race.}

    Peg O

  2. Not great and I so appreciate your honesty! Hang in there and keep at it!

  3. I like it!!

    I think cheating is perfectly fine if you don't get caught. If you get caught ~ you can simply say like the people in congress say....."I forgot what I was doing." "Really, I just forgot"

    We will believe you! and the people that read your blog won't say a word......

    How am I doing with my goals...NOT TO WELL! I like the idea of the hot fudge BROWNIE sundae OHHHHH.......I really do!

  4. PS

    Stupid Charlie........for being so fast and on this thing...for that matter Stupid Margaret.....she is training all the time too......

  5. Jen, I think that just the fact that you are willing to make the run is beyond the call of duty. See, this is why I don't run...pain. Things hurt too much. Not unless someone is chasing me...and even then I have to go back and pick up body parts. Keep doing what you're doing....because you're doing great.


  6. I agree with you mother 100% you have your whole life to run a marathon --- why do you have to do it now with a 1 year old and 3 x 4 year olds? You could do a half instead...your body is trying to tell you something and you have to listen.

  7. Oh this is so funny! I just sent an e-mail to Amy V.

    She congradulated me/us on meeting our goal and I confessed......

    "I'm a failure! Only ran 11 miles last Saturday and walked some of it! A few weeks ago I ran 10 miles w/OUT stopping...then I bought NEW shoes..... I was so good back then... NOW I am backstroking. New shoes? What was I thinking?

    I've been eating every type of chocolate in sight! Lucky for my kids.... they are made up of salt and water!"

    Last night, I set my alarm to get up really early around 5 am and workout... it came... and I went.......... BACK TO SLEEP!"

    It was raining..... Who gets up when it's raining?? Forecast predicts rain for the next 5 days! Rain goes good w/chocolate and diet coke. ;-)

    I will get it together... at the Next run... w/the group... which is this Saturday.....uh oh......... prediction of thunderstorms...

    Think I need a Diet Coke and about 10 Reeses Peanut Butter Eggs.

    What's Rosie's number?

    Love, Marg. ;-)

    PS I just found about "sleeping feet". Buy shoes that are a 1/2 size or a whole size bigger than what you usually wear. Also buy your shoes after you've gone for your workout. Your feet swell. Helped me.

  8. It's ok to take a break from training. And yes, I think most people who run marathons are crazy. But my goal is to run one, so I must be crazy too. Just remember why you want to run. If that is enough, push through and get training again! Good luck!

  9. I'm finally getting used to sticking to the WW plan I started oh...a month ago. I went to the Y last night and KICKED ASS on the eliptical. I thought I was working hard before but this time I was about five seconds from puking when I finished and I'm sore today. So I feel pretty good right now!

  10. I can't help but wonder about your shoes. I've always worn Asics running shoes. Loved them! I never even had to break them in, they were just molded perfectly for my foot shape. But this last time I bought a pair of Adidas running shoes, because they were cute. My feet fall asleep all the time now, which never happens with the Asics. Even when I'm not running they fall asleep at my desk.

    All that to say, you're making me wonder if the shape of my new shoes is doing something to make my feet fall asleep. And could that be your issue as well?

  11. PS ...nursing and pushing kids in a stroller... (wow)
    Wish I thought of that
    e-x-c-u-s-e. ;-) M

  12. It may make you feel better to know that compared to me your are a world-class athlete:) Of course a rock looks world-class compared to me.

    My co-worker told me that there's a really cool pregnancy workout on her "on demand" cable that she could record for me. I told her not to waste her time. I didn't even pretend to care.

  13. Thanks for sharing again. For some reason reading about your struggles makes me KNOW you are going to actually going to do this marathon, crazy as I and your mother think you are.

    I did something towards my goals:

    I signed up to play women's outdoor soccer. Which I haven't played since high school. And now I'm scared out of my mind since I'm playing with people who have played for the last ten years or more. It starts in 5 weeks. Enough time to actually train a little...

    Thanks for the inspiration.

  14. Where is that brownie sundae from?!? I think I need one!

  15. I say you do what you can in the run. The most important part of this endeavor is the fundraising and you are a pro at that!

  16. I just happened upon your blog and thought I'd let you know that you may be tying you shoes too tightly....I am a former runner and used to have this problem as well. There is also some special ways to lace your shoes that can help with this.

    But having run a marathon myself...I would have to say it wasn't really that empowering and self-fulfilling. So don't sweat it. :)

  17. Have you ever read She is a Dr and her blog is about running- lots of tips and ideas and she may have an answer about your foot problem. (Also inspiring to read)
    Just a thought- keep running..... um... because, like... I'm not . Eeek!
    Rebecca D

  18. it wasn't a goal but I got a walking partner! another person taking a stand and another $2300 at least to find a cure! YAY!! all I have to say about the marathon... at least you are trying. better to have tried and not been perfect then to have never tried at all. let's face it... if you even try, plus the money you've raised, there is no way you can fail. love your spirit... keep pressing on!