Week 9: “I’m Halfway There”

DAY | PLAN | ACTUAL
MON | REST | REST
TUE | 3M/STRENGTH | 3.2M (8:50/MI)/STRENGTH
WED | 7M | 7.3M (10:02/MI)
THU | 4M/STRENGTH | 4.2M HILL INT (9:40/MI)/STRENGTH
FRI | REST | REST
SAT | YOGA | BIKRAM90
SUN | 10M | 9.5M (10:11/MI)
TOTAL |24 MILES | 24.1 MILES

If it rains on the day of the marathon, I’m screwed. I know that as a fact and I have ZERO desire to take any steps to change it. I’m not going to train in the rain. I hate it. I knew I hated it before this past Sunday, but my drenching 9 1/2 mile run confirmed any and all doubts.

A couple of weeks ago we had a really thunderous storm on a weekday morning. I’m someone who’s always been afraid of storms–at least the really loud and violent ones. They are such an awakening; I always feel like the Universe is bellowing: You are small! You have no control over anything! Anyway, right after a loud smacking retort to the lightening, my sister texted me and said, “Don’t you just love storms?” She had the day off, and was set to spend it in bed with Netflix. I replied back to her, “I don’t love storms, but I like the rain just fine, as long as I don’t have to be out in it.”

I hate being cold. I hate being wet. When I get wet, I get cold. And then, I’m cold and wet.

I’ve officially decided the Weather Channel App ranks among the most useless available in the app store.

I set out for my cutback week’s easy 10 miler. I was groaning the night before as the weather forecast told me I’d be headed to the gym for the treadmill. It was not ideal, but I was determined to avoid the rain. I woke around 630am, which unfortunately is what I call really sleeping in these days. I looked outside, the ground was wet but no precipitation appeared to be falling at that moment. I headed to the bathroom with my iPad–just like you do. I opened my Weather Channel app and to my surprise, the 80% of rain in the forecast the night before had gone down to 13%. It was expected to be cloudy, with little to no rain for the next few hours. HURRAH! I finished my business, fueled up a bit, and headed out the door.

My gym is a little less than half a mile away from my house. That’s where I made my big mistake. I jogged in place for a few seconds at a stoplight right across the street from it. I looked up at the window to the cardio room, and then up to the sky. A few droplets hit my face and glistened my shoulders. Ah, I’ll be fine, I can take a drizzle. I proceeded.

Once I hit the park there was no turning back. I was 3 miles in and I was determined to get er’ done. And that’s when it began. The drizzle became light steady rain. Light steady rain became heavier steady rain. Heavier steadier rain became a fucking downpour.

I wasn’t going to stop. You know when you get stuck outside without an umbrella and everyone else has one or is taking cover under some sort of shelter and is looking at you like you are crazy? I always splash by those people defiantly–I’m already wet, I’m not going to get MORE wet–it’s over for me, I’ve accepted it. 

Well, it turns out I was wrong. Surely you can get MORE wet. Your already over-worn running shoes can FILL with water until you’re sure you’re running on sponges. Your enormous head of hair that takes forever to wash can actually get heavier on your head as your bun fills with more and more rain. You get it. I was drenched.

I abandoned my planned trip to Whole Foods for groceries after and ended instead at 9 1/2 miles when I returned to the park entrance after my second loop around. I ran under the scaffolding across the street, took out my phone to summon an outrageously surging Lyft, and scooted my cold wet butt home.

While I fell a little short of my training plan on that run, I still hit the mark for my weekly total and counted the endeavor as a win. I learned something about myself out there: I don’t care about being a badass as much as I thought I did.

I do hard things. That’s one of my things. I’m totally rolling my eyes at myself right now. I’ll tell you, for about 10 minutes of that run in the rain, I thought I was pretty hot shit. Swishing past the other runners who had taken cover under the peristyle felt like I was really accomplishing something. And then, all of the sudden, it didn’t. I was cold and wet and weary I was going to slip on the flooded pavement in my shitty shoes. More than once I exclaimed out loud: This fucking sucks!! 

I’m not going to run in the rain again. I hate it that much. If it runs during the marathon, it’ll suck, but I will do the best I can. Funny–I think that 9 1/2 miles might be my most powerful run yet. Not really due to performance– I ran hard and I pushed through almost the whole run, but that wasn’t where I felt my gains. I left that park realizing that I didn’t have anything to prove to anyone. The last couple of miles–which were all uphill with water rapidly cascading down, were painful. Much of the way I thought about how for almost all of my childhood, my Dad told me I was lazy.  His voice and that thought has lived in the back (and sometimes the front) of my head my whole life. Suddenly, as I moved up that hill, that voice and that idea began to disappear. It was replaced with my own voice, and with things I knew for sure. I thought: I am a hard worker. I am the real deal. I have nothing left to prove. My best, is more than enough.

After a long hot shower, I spent several hours on the couch in sweats, underneath a heavy blanket. I was a light-hearted grouch–I was crabby from the rain but happy, knowing what I had walked away with. My hubs humored me and even brought me food and drink when I couldn’t bear to leave my cozy lair. In the later part of the afternoon I finally started to warm up, and we settled into our team’s first college football game of the season. That’s when I finally got up, walked over to the fridge, and wrote in my 9 1/2 miles in the last open slot of the week. I admired the spreadsheet, dropped the pen on the counter, and loudly but to myself declared: “Holy shit, I’m halfway there.”

9 weeks down, 9 to go…

Where you at?

 

 

 

 

header: Noah Silliman

 

 

 

 

 

52 thoughts on “Week 9: “I’m Halfway There”

  1. I grew up in the wet of the pacific northwest and miss it now in a desert-ish climate. On the occasion that it rains here in Utah I love it haha! I’m weird I know.. but I totally cuddle under a blanket as long as I can afterward too cuz I HATE being cold. That may sound counter to what I said above, but once I’m warmed up running, the rain doesn’t bother me at all. It’s a love/hate thing I suppose 🙂

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  2. I can deal with light drizzle or fine rain, but heavy/torrential makes it a nightmare in terms of apparel. Dress heavy? You soak up some much water and moving in wet clothes is not fun. Dress light? It can be real chilly if it’s a colder day. Strong/gale-force winds I get a little nervous with: we’re not used to that in the UK!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I give all respect to UK runners! You guys are tougher than me for sure!
      The run in question was a dress light one and I was freezing during and after–no fun at all! All the comments on here are making me think I could stand to get a little tougher in the rain though :). We will see!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. you’re there, and each of our “there’s” looks and feels different at different times. And often those nasty bits we pick up from our families (and everyone has at least a few), are shed in progressive layers, a little bit at a time. Its tough when what a parent values is different from who you naturally are, as we often feel like we need to be someone else, which nearly always is a recipe for misery, if not disaster.

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  4. qplourde

    Oh no! I’ve been lucky with the weather where it will say it’s going to rain, then it ends up not. I have trouble running in a downpour, but some of my best runs have been during a light rain. That being said I do usually avoid running on rainy days. Congrats on being half way – I remember those days, LOL a few weeks ago! Ramping up now – in a few weeks I’ll have my longest run, then it’s downhill from there!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Cat, sounds like a miserable run (cold and wet will do that) that led to a big piece of transformation, washing away the message of “lazy”. You can do well without that. Lazy people don’t train for marathons, or work on their writing after a day of work.
    Letting go of what we can’t control is indeed freeing.
    I had a related experience years ago rafting the the Grand Canyon. It was raining, and thunder storming, Could hear the thunder echoing through the canyons, with the energy of sound setting off rockfalls. At that point, I realized I really was very small and soft in the grand scheme of things. If the boat capsized, or I got thrown out, I might have options as to how I responded, but whether these things happened was totally out of my control. It turned out to be a huge relief, letting go of a great deal of stuff I was thinking I could or should control.

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    1. Your words are often a big comfort to me Steph and these ones are especially. It’s frustrating that something can stay with us for so long even though we know somewhere deep inside us that it’s not true. I really want my dad to be proud of me–I’ve tried to kill that desire for so long but I’m not sure it will ever go away!
      You’re insanely amazing. The fact that in that terrifying rafting situation you could feel the relief of letting go and realizing you weren’t in control is pretty incredible. I don’t think I’m there yet! One day 😘.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I grew up in Wales where rain is never far away and have moved to the wettest suburb in Cape Town so perhaps it’s no surprise that the rain doesn’t bother me too much. Wind…that’s the thing I hate. Good job on pushing through – I hope you are able to avoid the rain through the rest of your training but don’t let a little water damage your weekly goals 🙂 On race day you’ll have the adrenaline umbrella.

    As a parent of young kids my heart broke a little at how you’ve had to carry the branding of being lazy for so long – and I hope your own positive, strong voice drowns it out from now on.

    I’ve rested for nearly three weeks now. I suspect if I don’t run this weekend I might go mad.

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    1. Adrenaline umbrella. I love it.
      You know it’s weird Nik, I have a friend whose mother was similar to my Dad- she always told her she was lazy and always pushed her to do more. My friend grew up thinking nothing was ever good enough. Now in her thirties, my friend is super driven and very successful. I was talking to her the other day and she says that although she hated how her mom was growing up, she often wonders if she would have the drive she has now without it. Sure, it doesn’t feel good to never feel enough–but she’s working on that now. But she thinks that voice of her moms has pushed her for years and years. I’m not sure i feel the same about my dad, but I understand what she is saying. Parents are hard, especially when you realize that they are just people. My relationship with my dad is not what I want it to be and I know now that it never will be. But working through a lot of these long standing feelings has been helpful–clearing them out allows me to have more gratitude for the relationship we do have.
      Enjoy your run this weekend! Savor every minute!! x

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Cat, my heart broke a little when I read what your dad had said to you. I’m so glad you were able to push that out of your mind and realize that you are anything but lazy! ❤ You are a strong ass woman and you're half way there! PS, if you want to talk about running in the rain, I live in the Pacific Northwest where any day now it's going to start raining and it won't stop for like, 6 months! I have all of the waterproof things! As much as it sucks, I think I prefer a fun downpour to an annoying drizzle. Like, if it's going to rain it might as well be a lot so I can have fun splashing through puddles (since I'm already soaked anyway).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ahh…thanks Jess. I think you are the only one who picked up that little nugget. When I sat down to write this it’s not even a part that I expected to share, but it just came out. I’m glad it did because writing it aloud feels therapeutic. It’s crazy how things that were said to us when we were young stick with us, even when we fight like hell to be free of them.
      I’m amazed by everyone in the UK and you all in the Pacific Northwest–I am not sure I could handle all the rain. I feel like I might not even be much of an outdoor runner if I lived there–I’m in awe of you all!
      I like your attitude–LET IT POUR. You’re right, go big or go home. Thanks again Jess. x

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Haha, this really made me laugh! Great post! Even though I kind of have to run in the rain as it rains all the time here, I’m still not keen!

    It does, however, make me feel like a bit of a superhero once you get to the superwet stage! I tend to imagine I look way cooler than I inevitably do 🌧😊 I’m sure it won’t rain on the day!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Tom!! So glad I could give you a chuckle 😜.
      No i think I agree, running in the rain does = superhero status!!

      Thanks for saying it won’t rain on the day, I’m thinkin the same 😉. Come back and chat again please!! x

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m like some of the crazies that already posted and don’t mind the rain. Well, to a point. If it’s pissing with rain before I leave the house, I’m less motivated. Saying this though, the liking rain thing only applies to when I’m running. Any other time, I’m like a cat and hate getting wet. I live in England so I don’t go anywhere without my umbrella. Anyhow, I’m so glad you went for it and powered through the rain! It’s the best feeling when you accomplish your weekly total or even just that really hard run. You’re doing amazing! I’m in constant awe of you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha!! Like I said to someone else Jen, I was hesitant to share this with my U.K. buds–you’ve got to all be like, “come on girl, it’s just a little rain!” LOL. My husband and I were in London a couple years ago for a week and it rained every single day!
      Thanks so much for the love girl! x

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  10. I think there’s levels of rain Cat. I don’t mind the light stuff, I quite enjoy it actually. It’s the pissing down bouncing off the ground stuff I’m not a fan of. The forecast here for tomorrow is heavy rain from around 8am onwards. I had planned to run after work, as I have a breakfast meeting at 8am, but that would now mean running in the heavy rain. Instead, my alarm is now set for 4.45am. I think us runners are all a little crazy……

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  11. tim

    You could always get a waterproof jacket… it’s always good to have an excuse to buy more fancy kit!

    Every time you run (or do anything for that matter) in conditions you don’t like you extend your comfort zone a little bit and then the next time it doesn’t seem so bad. The Stoic view suggests that it’s a good idea to deliberately set out to make yourself a little uncomfortable every now and again (e.g. wear less in cold weather, wear more in hot weather, go out in the rain more). Then it becomes much easier to accept the conditions, whatever they may be. The older I get the more I think that the Stoics got a lot right.

    Anyway, you don’t need advice from some random person on the other side of the world who doesn’t really have a clue what he is talking about! Good luck and just keep going.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim you are wrong!! I LOVE advice from a random person on the other side of the world!! You are the first person to ever mention stoicism on my blog–I love it! I’m thrilled to have your perspective. You’re also very right. Reading your comment I kept on wanting to argue with you–I kept wanting to interject with “But…”. The thing is I think I aim for uncomfortable as much as I can, I know that’s where my growth happens. I think after 9 weeks of training That rain just felt like it whooped me.
      I will keep going as you say. Thank you so much for reading. Please don’t be a stranger–I’ll take advice from the other side of the world as often as I can get it. 😉

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  12. Yup, the marathon is getting closer. Like you (and probably most of us), I really hope that it does not rain on Nov 5th. Actually, maybe a light drizzle in the afternoon would not be too bad. But, hell to the no with sitting in the rain while waiting your coral to start on Staten Island.

    I should have gone into meteorology as a career, because it probably is one of the few professions where one can be wrong all the time and not get fired. 😉

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    1. no! Not even a drizzle Kwame!!! LOL. OMG, sitting in the rain waiting in the coral–you just described my hell–i never even thought of the waiting to start! My hubs tells me that’s the worst part of the day.

      you meteorology comment just made me laugh out loud so hard–i can’t even tell you how many times they have burned me lately! I did miles on the treadmill this morning because it said 70% chance of rain. Not one drop fell as i stared out the window of the gym!!

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  13. Haha, I always have the thought of the weather could be shit on race day, so best train in it anyway. And living in England you can’t really avoid it 😂. I’ve been looked at a few times like I’m a total nutter when I’m running in the down pours, but I always think it feels more epic running in weather people wouldn’t let their dog out into 😂.

    I’m woefully behind on my marathon training 😢 my knee is giving me issues so I’m trying to hold back for a few weeks, but that doesn’t include work or hockey training 😂.

    Keep pushing chick, you’re gonna smash it 😁

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    1. I was ashamed to write this–i knew all my UK readers would be rolling their eyes, lol!!

      Sounds like you are doing the right thing with your knee. Remember, much better to rest now and get back in strong, then push too early and be out for the long run. Hang in there and trust!!

      Thanks for the push lady, I needed it today! xx

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  14. My half-marathon PR is in the rain. Like you, the Weather Channel app failed me. It was supposed to rain maybe the last mile of the half-marathon, but it didn’t. It rain pretty much the whole half-marathon. I looked like a drowned sewer rat at the end of it and my phone had to go in rice. the headphones started going out at mile 11.5, and I wasn’t sure how much damage was done (I am thankful it lasted another six months).

    About two months ago, Maris and I went out for 5 miles and around 1 mile it started raining on us. I opened the app up and saw there were no rain clouds showing up on the radar. Apparently it was a quick drizzle/light shower of 3-4 minutes that didn’t show up on the radar. At least we were able to go on. I’m not a fan of training in the rain, but Maris hates water with a passion (she loves snow though, so go figure). She evens walks around puddles. So running in the rain is a no-go for Miss Priss and myself.

    On another note, would you mind if I linked to your post on the magnesium oil? I used it last week on a sore knee, and it seemed to do the trick. I’d like for others to get the benefit of it as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Is it weird that I’m happy you and Maris don’t like running in the rain either? If Maris feels the same way I do it makes me feel like I am on the right side!

      And yes! Link away–any time, you don’t have to ask. So glad the magnesium oil worked for you, that makes me happy!

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  15. Wow, this post really doesn’t pull any punches – I love it! If you have a supporter on race day, the best thing they can do for you is carry spare, dry socks. Running in soaked shoes is the thing that sent us to blister city on our ultra-marathon.

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  16. I don’t mind running in the rain as long as it’s above about 75 degrees out. Rain and cold is just miserable. The first half marathon I ever ran was cold and rainy, but for some reason it didn’t deter me, it just made me want to do another one. I knew if I could finish a half in that kind of weather, I could do even better under “normal” conditions so I ran it the following year and it’s the only half marathon I’ve ever ran twice! Congrats on reaching the halfway mark!

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    1. I agree, cold AND rainy is the worst! I’m kind of one of those people who is always cold so even rain in warmer weather tends to make me cold! I love your half story though–it’s so true–if we can do things in harder conditions, it’s awesome to see what we can do when things are ideal!

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  17. RunningMyCourse

    Running can be incredibly empowering! I’m glad that you found your strength even in the rain to get it done and validate to yourself that your best is enough! I got caught in the rain on my long run last weekend and it’s not my favorite either. It’s excellent for building the mentality you need on race day if the conditions are wet. I chalk it up to badassery;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are right, I am sure it did build up some of that mentality that I need!! Perhaps I have had a bit of a negative attitude about it, I’ve just sort of accepted that running in the rain is not my forte, and i have no desire to do it if i don’t have to! You are right though–whether a run is wet or dry, it is definitely empowering. Thanks so much for reading and sharing your thoughts–love having you!!

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  18. This reminds me of the second 1/2 my daughter and I did together. It was a Wizard of Oz in Kansas. She wanted to do costumes so she was Dorothy and I a flying monkey. I made them and she red glittered her tennis shoes. This was great until it rained the first nine miles. Her shoes were a mix of white and red glitter which was everywhere. They were so stiff her feet hurt for a couple of days. But we both said we were finishing it rain or not. And then we saw a gal who did the whole half on crutches. As long as it’s not lightening run in the rain and finish that bad boy marathon. Just don’t glitter your shoes. 😂

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    1. Ok, I am SO amazed by you and your daughter. I always see posts and pics from people running races in costumes, and i have no idea how they do it! I am way too concerned with my comfort, i could never handle it! I am not even good at wearing costumes on halloween, much less running a race! Hats off to you two, seriously!!

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    1. You know the cold i can deal with– I don’t like it, but I can do it, just got to bundle up and never stop running-cause stopping means I freeze!
      I think this post is basically just outing myself as a wimp in the rain–i just am, and I’ve decided I am ok with it, lol. Like I feel like I am reaching an age where I’m like, “you know what? I don’t have to take on every challenge that presents itself, I’m good.” lol.
      Yes, half way! How about you? What marathon are you running, btw? Not sure how i don’t know this?!

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      1. About 1/3 of the way. I am running the Rock n Roll San Antonio Marathon on December 3. I am racing through training though. I have a couple races coming up this month.
        About the rain… Just in case it does rain on race day, maybe consider trying out some different outfits/accessories on a rainy day. I am not big on wearing hats but I know many runners do on rainy days to keep the rain off their face. I hate being cold and wet too but for me it doesn’t hit till I stop. (you are doing all this hard training for the marathon and it might be good to be prepared just in case). Honestly, I avoid the rain sometimes, not because I hate it, but just because I don’t want to have to deal with it at that particular time… so I run at the gym. If I have a scheduled run with my training partner or a race, thats when I don’t give myself that option. I’ve heard that specialty running stores have a spray for the bottom of shoes that helpsprevents slipping when it rains. Anyhow, I hope this helps! : )

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  19. Well done – halfway is HUGE! It’s like leaping over a mental barrier – on your way ‘home’ to race day now. I know what you mean about the rain – I won’t go out if it’s already raining but I reserve the right to feel like the toughest person in the world if it starts raining while I’m out there. I wouldn’t say I love it by any stretch but I dislike treadmills more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha–no Gill you are right, I DID feel super tough when I was out there. But after a while shit just wore me down. I guess the good part was that I didn’t leave feeling defeated–I can admit that it sucked and that doesn’t make me lazy or not badass–just honest!
      It’s funny, I have a certain love for the treadmill for short distances–but just had to use it this morning for 7 miles because of the rain and it was a little bit horrible, lol. Anything over five miles is just too long for me–feels like forever!

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  20. Oh yes, pre race weather anxiety… I have about 4 weather apps and keep going between them until I find the one that gives me the best prediction ( Norwegian weather app…) It’s never til the day of the race when I realise ” shit, I have actually NO control over the weather” and the race still gets run🙂S x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Girl, I love that you called this out right away for what it is–anxiety. You saw right through me! I think this post is my attempt to LET IT GO, and just live one day at a time–when the day comes, it’s out of my hands right? oy vey.

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  21. Personally I love the rain. I love running in it as I feel I can run a bit harder since it is cooling me down. I’ve always loved the water though. Small wonder I became a sailor in the Coast Guard and amazing that I now live in and love the desert!

    I think you are amazing. Not because you are some hot-shit runner out there when the others were cowering. Because you did a difficult thing knowing it was difficult.

    Also: “You are small! You have no control over anything!” How freeing to be reminded you are responsible for only yourself!

    Looking forward to race day!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I knew I was going to get some rain lovers! I have read SO many people say that they love the rain because it cools them down. I always feel like my sweat cools me down-and I air towards cold, I never really overheat, so I guess just different strokes for different folks :).
      Josh I love your perspective so much. I have have had the same perspective as you, but I have sometimes forgotten it and I feel so fortunate that you engage to remind me. You are right, it IS freeing to know I am only responsible for myself! I’ve just got to do the best for the world that I can. I don’t have to carry the weight of everything.

      So appreciating having your thoughts on here Josh. Thanks again! x

      Liked by 1 person

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