Monday, September 20, 2010

What a miserable run

So -- yesterday's run sucked.  I'd like to come up with a more sophisticated way to phrase it, but suck really seems to sum it up.   

It sucked pretty much from beginning to end.  The plan was I would run a 3 mile loop at the beginning, 5.5 miles of trail out and then back and the same 3 mile loop at the end.  

When I came out of the first loop I looked at my watch and I was 45 seconds off my usual pace.  At 3 miles in.  At that point I really should have just gotten back in my car and gone home.   The next 11 miles got slower and I struggled back to the start feeling like crap but theoretically ready to do the last three.  I really should have gotten in the car and gone home.   

About a half mile into the last loop, I completely bonked.  If you're not an endurance athlete: 
Bonking is, of course, slang for running out of energy during exercise. It usually happens when the working muscles run low on glycogen, which is the body's limiting fuel source for sustained activity.
Bonking is bad.  It sucks all the life out of you and its pretty darn demoralizing to boot.   Think on your knees trying to find the energy to walk.   After the run, I ate a burger and a milkshake, watched maybe an hour of football and fell asleep somewhere around 5:30 and pretty much slept until the next morning.    My body stopped working somewhere around mile 14 and cashed its chips in for the rest of the weekend right there.  

Fortunately I can pretty much locate all the causes of this disaster. 

  1. I'm a lazy slob and didn't listen to my wife (always a recipe for disaster) and start my run at 6:30 like I should have...instead I slept in and rolled out at 10:45 to start my run at 11:30 (first person to leave a comment on where the sun is during an 11:30 to 3ish run wins a prize)
  2. I didn't eat at all for 25 hours on the proceeding day.
  3. I didn't eat enough during my run.  

So a couple things.  Fasting the day before a 17 mile run, is likely a bad idea.  I clearly didn't pull it off well and I clearly didn't fuel up properly at the all you can eat Chinese place the night before.  Starting the  day of the run with a bowl of oatmeal is clearly not enough fuel for a long run.   Lesson learned - eat regularly the day before and fuel up the morning of.

When it looks like its going to get hot out, and its 64 degrees in the morning, run when its 64.  Don't wait around until its 69 and rising to venture out to the largely shadeless trail to run in the heat as its rising to 85 degrees.  It was a disaster waiting to happen.  

Finally I somehow didn't eat enough food.  I need to crank up the number of calories I am putting into my body during my run.  Somehow I am not disciplining myself to do this ... have to be aiming for ~200 per hour.  

So some days you have good runs and some days you have bad ones.   I'm not going to let this get me down because, I''m pretty sure the fast was not coordinated well with the run.  Also I've done 14 miles at least 6 times before without these problems.   

18 miles next week.  

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