Sunday, October 14, 2012

When Running Pisses You Off

 

IMAG0890

Do not ask me what is going on in this picture that Ken took of me this morning right before our run. Maybe one of you could provide an appropriate caption (e.g., SUAR demonstrates how to pee standing up without getting your shorts wet).

Today, after this picture was taken, running pissed me off.

At the end of the 7 mile run, I was in tears. You would have thought it was 29 miles, not 7. Things hurt. My heart rate got way higher than it should have for what seemed like no reason. I had to stop twice in the bushes. “Maybe I like to run, but my body doesn't like for me to run,” I whined to Ken. I seriously had a moment of being tired of trying to make something work that felt like it wasn’t working. Square into circle, anyone?

Do you ever feel this way? Can you please say “yes” just to make me feel better?

Ken reminded me everyone has bad days. I know that. It’s just that I have tried so hard to improve my performance and to prevent injury through heart rate training and form changes that I thought it would be easier by now. I thought things would feel more effortless. I thought my aches and pains would be gone. No, I am not injured, but yes, my lower back hurts and gets tight and my knee and hamstring ache sometimes. I want that to all be gone.  Maybe I want my 20 year old body back. Or, maybe I just need some perspective.

Then, I glance around the viral world (and I know I shouldn’t compare myself), but there are victories everywhere (PRs, marathon finishes, etc.). I have to remind myself that it is just like 99% of what people post on their Facebook statuses: it is all positive, upbeat and “perfect.” Most people don’t post the crap like:

I just ran 7 miles, everything hurt, I had to poop and it wasn’t that fun.”

I really did feel down today. So down for a few minutes that even a donut and a huge cup of coffee did not make me smile. Now, that’s bad.

Ever had bad days, weeks, months with running?

If so, do you ever wonder if running is just not for you? I love to run so much, there is no way I am giving it up. But, I do want to find strategies to help with some of these issues. Probably for me it will mean more rest, more strength training, better hydration (I think this was why my heart rate got so high) and the most important thing: not being so hard on myself and not comparing myself to others. There is no reason in hell not to smile at a donut.

SUAR

104 comments:

  1. Yes!! You are not the only one.

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  2. I think we all have those! I had that today on my 5 mile trail run. My legs felt heavy, my head hurt, I couldn't get going, my phone kept buzzing with work e-mails...meh! For me I have found that this is when I back off of running for a day or so...and then I feel better.

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  3. I remind myself all the time of the "high" I get when I run and finish...no matter how far, how slow...there's always a high... even when it sucks during...

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  4. Caption for your picture: "SUAR checks her P-Mail."

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  5. Ditto - there are days when I, too, want to post something like "miserable run today, even had problems with my snot rocket aim and it landed on my sleeve", but some of my coworkers are friends on FB, so probably not wise - you're in good company, Beth :-)

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  6. I can totally relate. Last week I had my last 20 mile training run before taper for a marathon. It was cold, pouring rain, windy, and I had to poop. There was nowhere good to poop so I tried to hold it in. I ended up vomiting twice and crying multiple times throughout the run. The tendonitis that I thought was healing was killing me by the end of the run. After last Sunday, I wanted to quit running and forget about the marathon. After a pep talk by my husband, I pulled it together and had some nice short runs this week. I ended up having a great half marathon today where everything just came together perfectly, and I have faith in my training again. Anyway, all of that to say that it's a love/hate relationship. It's not easy. It's pretty damn hard, and I certainly didn't post about that awful 20 miler on Facebook. You better believe that I lit up Facebook with my half PR today.

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  7. YES!! I just had pretty much the same day as you did it sounds like.. I went out trying for 6 miles but knew at mile 1 it wasny gonna happen cause literally everything hurt!! I have been having alot of Hip Pains.. mainly in my right hip.. it hurts to sit for too long , certain standing positions hurt and running definitely hurts so I have cut bavk my mileage quite a butbit .. its been going on for a couple montha now.. Been to the chiro, took a week off, cut back mileage and have been working on strength training so today I figured Id shoot for 6.. Only made it 5.3 and I am still hurting jn my hips and now lower back and I just feel drained... Its soo uspetting.. I LOVE to run and it helps me to clear my mind.. Im only 24 and am worried that with the amount of pain and discomfort im having now in my hips that if I keep it up I will be in bad shape the older I get.. IDK what to do.. the chiro didnt help and didnt give me any advice.. ??

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    1. I had the same problem with my hip. Went to a PT and he told me it was my IT band. He taught me how to stretch it and I also bought a foam roller. It took 6 months for the pain to go completely away but I was still able to run.

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    2. I will have to check into that! Maybe I'll start with a Foam Roller and see if that helps.. I'm trying to put off going to the PT but I may have to just give in and go see a Specialist.. Thanks for the input!

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  8. Absolutely. Sometimes for weeks at a time. I just have to remind myself that these things come in phases, & sooner or later I'm bound to have some good days again. I think it's also important to be kind to your body even when it's not able to do the things you want it to do or what it could do yesterday or last week or last year. It's doing the best it can for you, so be sure to give it some love for that. :)

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  9. I hate running. I love to eat, so I do it. That "runner's high" that people speak of? Never got it. You'd think somewhere during any one of my 5 half marathons or 40 some odd 5ks that I would get some enjoyment out if it. But alas, all I ever feel at the end of a run is pissed off. I hate my feet. I hate the way my legs feel.

    But I keep running because I haven't found anything else I hate less. (Although I really love weight lifting, it doesn't have the aerobic benefits.)

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    1. OMG, thank you. I thought I was the only one who has never acheived a runners high...many lows, never a high. :)

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    2. I just started getting them. I've been running for 3 years. I've had them after where I almost feel drunk and when I am running, I feel like I'm floating. I prefer the ones after even though I had a VERY angry woman behind me last Friday and all I could think was "She could really use a run." I wanted to smack myself!

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  10. Beth, I've head a bad YEAR running. No, 2 years. I can't remember the last time I had a run where I returned feeling great. I think I'm going to hire someone to help me figure this shit out, I'm so sick of it. Don't let my 4:41 Chicago Marathon make you feel bad either. I had a great day out there, not because of my time, but because my stupid head didn't tell me to stop the entire way like it has for the past 2 years. Victory is small sometimes....I am learning the hard way that it takes a great deal of time as we age (blah!) for change to feel good. It will.

    xo

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  11. I have a post going up tomorrow about yesterday's 13 mile "run" that was the slowest and most sluggish I've felt in a long time. It's a little disconcerting when my first marathon is less than a month away. I've had to give myself a major pep talk about high-intensity weeks and recovery weeks and good days and bad days.

    Good for you for getting that run in even though it wasn't fun or easy.

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  12. YES!! I just had pretty much the same day as you did it sounds like.. I went out trying for 6 miles but knew at mile 1 it wasny gonna happen cause literally everything hurt!! I have been having alot of Hip Pains.. mainly in my right hip.. it hurts to sit for too long , certain standing positions hurt and running definitely hurts so I have cut bavk my mileage quite a butbit .. its been going on for a couple montha now.. Been to the chiro, took a week off, cut back mileage and have been working on strength training so today I figured Id shoot for 6.. Only made it 5.3 and I am still hurting jn my hips and now lower back and I just feel drained... Its soo uspetting.. I LOVE to run and it helps me to clear my mind.. Im only 24 and am worried that with the amount of pain and discomfort im having now in my hips that if I keep it up I will be in bad shape the older I get.. IDK what to do.. the chiro didnt help and didnt give me any advice.. ??

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  13. I'm still not convinced running is for for me. The mental game is the biggest challenge. Sometimes it helps to take a mental break from the strategy...go for a few runs where you don't monitor anything - heart rate, speed, miles, nuthin'. Just some music and your feet and sit back and enjoy the ride.

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  14. I'm still limping following yesterday's hilly 9-miler. (I posted pictures on my blog of the pretty route if anyone wants to see them.) I have synovitis that won't heal. So, yes, I feel your pain.

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  15. You know, I liken my relationship with running to one of those passionate romantic involvements...there is NOTHING that can make me feel as good or as bad. But the perspective that I like to try and maintain is that only things worthwhile can make you feel like that. To get those incredible highs where you have the world in your palm means that sometimes you have to be at the bottom of the heap. Passion and devastation have to be in equal proportion. I wouldn't trade that because if I did...sure, it would soften the pain of things really sucking, but it would also dull the victories. Of course, I say this from a mountain top after a GREAT half marathon yesterday...:)

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  16. Yes - half way through my half marathon last week (which I flew across the country to California to run) I hated running and literally at 6 miles in began walking! I haven't walked during a half marathon in quite some time. It was the first time ever I kinda wanted to bail (for no good reason.) I ran / walked / questioned why I do this, finally finished and got my medal. It was just one of those days.

    I'm feeling better now but sometimes running pisses me off. It pisses me off when my muscles start to cramp or I have tummy troubles. It pisses me off when people who are on their second day of running, ever - speed by me like I'm standing still.

    It's OK. My hubby, sister, parents and son also often piss me off but like running, ultimately - I love them more than life so the bumps are worth it and the loving feeling returns.

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  17. Hell yes I have hard runs, but let me remind you that I read your heart rate training post and the next day I started to use that method. That was what 2 months ago. I went from running 2.5 miles and having to stop to 10 miles this morning without stopping because of you. You are amazing. Your mind, your heart and your body is amazing. You should not feel this way, but I can't fix that. I will tell you I am 32 and while todays 13.1 run was the BEST run of all my runs, I am so sore. My knees ache, my hips hurt. I pushed my body and it's letting me know this. But it was you who helped me by one blog post. Don't compete with yourself, not worth it.

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  18. Yep, right there with you. When I'm on, the thrill I get from running is like no other. Sadly, however, I seem to be injured more often than not. It seems like everytime I'm feeling really great in a training cycle, something happens to blow my confidence (that was today...my 14 miler turned into a DNF as I gimped home for a painful 5 miles and had a good cry. Yes,running has definitely taught me a little something about pain. It has also taught me a great deal about discipline, and how to never stop trying for those perfectly blissful runs that magically cancel out all the cruddy ones!

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  19. I had a horrible run this morning. Had to take a potty/blow your nose break at 2 miles and only made it another mile and a half before my legs started shutting down. Guess I'm not completely over this cold but how come I was able to get 4 great runs in last week when I had a cold?

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  20. Yes! I have had some bad running days. The worst is when everyone else is having GREAT running days! Was tempted to post one day on Daily Mile: Lousy trail run. Tripped, fell down and shit my pants. Just to see who's paying attention!

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  21. I gad a terrible run today as well, my hubby did not. He ran 32K with a smile on his face out in the cold drizzle, I did a terrible 13K on my treadmill at 4:30am. I had our son's Air Cadet walk-a-thon this morning so I had to get up early to get my run in. The only bright spot was it allowed me to watch the last 90 mins of the Kona Ironman and it was so inspiring.

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  22. I love the quote "the bad runs make us cherish the good ones all the more" I had a horrible run on Tuesday last week- I had major GI issues and there was not a tree or a bush to hide behind! So... use your imagination! I was so sick by the time I got home, I was scared to run again the rest of the week. But I went and the next run was good and the next day was even better!

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  23. I have recently fallen OUT of love with running and I have no reason as to why. And fall has always been my favorite time to run outside here in NC. Still managing to work out 7 days a week, but much preferring classes.

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  24. I am doing this running thing for fun. I am not going to win anything, and although I am not fast, I do PR. With 11 minute miles. And the need to poop. And now my ankle hurts. And if something doesn't hurt (hurt, not injured), I didn't run hard or long enough. Anyways, try not to compare yourself with others because that is more tiring then the run itself. I think you are a running/blogging superstar.

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  25. Biking. I've had bad YEARS at biking. I love my bike, but lots of times, like most of this summer, the bike did not love me. Running is just a struggle all the time, sometimes more, sometimes less.

    And I'll bet you got your shorts wet with that pose.

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  26. Just when I thought i couldn't love you more. I had a horrid run today. The entire time I was bitching and moaning ("Why do I run? This sucks! Why do I do this? You can just stop. Nobody's MAKING you do this!") and I actually thought to myself "I wish SUAR would post more blogs about shitty runs and how sometimes running just plain SUCKS. And here you did.

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  27. Yes. Yesterday, my mind was way into my run - my heart loved it, but my body was kicking me the whole way. I kept looking back to see the 100 pound sled I was dragging along the trail, but it was never there. I planned on 9 and finished 7, happy enough. Every time I stopped to rest along those 7 miles I was sure I could make the extra loop to get the mileage up, but by mile 6 I was sure I had to call it quits early. Sometimes my body is just - not there.

    And, re: donuts, I made Pumpkin Spice Monkey balls (I mean bread) yesterday (gluten free). Never made or eaten anything like that before, so THANK YOU for the suggestion. They are ridiculous and every time I walk through the kitchen I grab another ball. It's all I've eaten all day.

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  28. I hate the first two miles. I can't breathe, I'm stiff, my Excedrin hasn't kicked in. I've had PF where my feet would get numb and I ran on them anyway. Thanks to form change and orthodics, I'm finally getting faster and going longer.

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  29. Your body is telling you to take a couple of days off. Listen to your body.

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    1. Yes that's why I said I planned to rest.

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  30. I had a horrible run on Friday and I posted that shit on FB! Hardest 12.5 miles I've run in a looooong time. This just a week after feeling awesome on all of my runs. Hormones maybe? Who knows... I just keep repeating the PR time that I'm shooting for next month. Like an Om. Its the only thing that keeps me going some days.

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  31. When I bonk hard on a run I try to turn it around by getting my butt to the gym (after a little recovery, of course). Doing strength work helps me feel empowered, even after a crap run. Plus, there are no negatives to trying to build muscle, especially since after a certain point in life we start to lose 1% of our muscle mass per year. I'd say go do something else for a week or two. I love running, but it's a complicated relationship in which we often take breaks to cheat and do other things ;)

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  32. In a couple more weeks it will have been a bad YEAR! Partially torn adductor x2, rhabdomyolisis, tweaked groin that keeps haunting me. I was doing well the past 4 weeks slowly building up. Tuesday night? Did my long run-8 miles. After and the next couple days? My groin was freaking killing me! Back to doing PT stuff, again. I did run 4 and then 5, but both were really slow. No aches that were worth me stopping, but I feel like crap. This was also the subject of my post today. I have a few USRD's coming up! And I was hoping to do my 2nd and 3rd races of the year this weekend- my first was only a few weeks ago, too.

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  33. Yes, yes and yes. I'm pretty sure my ortho DR is going to put the kabosh on me running again. So I'm trying to just focus on getting healthy in general. Sometimes though a bad run is better than no run. (like that fishing quote... a bad day of fishing is still better than a good day at work.) yuck yuck yuck. lol

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  34. You need bad days to help you realize when you have great days!!!! How would you know if your having a great day if every day was "epic"?

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  35. Running is hard for me - painful and painfully slow - 15 mm, no big improvement.....but in the real world you only post stuff that makes others feel good and self feel good. I love your stuff because it is real and I can say He&& to the Yeah - feel just like that.....thanks for that gift and that freedom

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  36. Here's the thing that gets me through runs like that: for every super crappy run, you'll have an amazing run. A run during which you feel you could run forever, and possibly even fly. Nothing hurts. Breathing is easy. And, everything is PERFECT! All other runs fall somewhere in the middle of the two extremes, which is good enough to keep us coming back for more.

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  37. Yes, it happened to me today!!! I decided, even though I was exhausted and just had two wisdom teeth extracted 3 days ago, to run 10 miles. At the end of it, I wanted to puke and cry, and I actually still do. It makes you appreciate those awesome runs so much more though!

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  38. Today was 89 F again and super humid and I had hill sprints in the blazing sun on my schedule so YES, some runs suck!!!

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  39. Yes, I have bad days. No, I never feel like running is not for me. That's why I get so down when I have bad days. I always remember that last run when I was amazing. Had that yesterday. I know it's in me, it just isn't in me every day. But if it was, wouldn't we take those amazing runs for granted? And isn't that why we have wine?

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  40. This happens to me all. the. time. All summer, I made myself run even though I hated it, (let's just say pooping in a gas station bathroom isn't on my top ten list of "favorite things to do") but then I go through periods (albeit small slivers of periods) where my running is just amazing, and I love it. But I keep reminding myself, I can stop running any day, no one is making me, my identity is not based on it, it does not control me. Then usually I just want to get out and run.

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  41. Maybe your expectations were too high.

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    1. Clearly they were because I thought running an easy pace on a gorgeous day would feel good!

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  42. Yep. That's why I've recently decided to stop trying to run half-marathons. I've run four and only ended one without pain, walking, tears. I'm going to give sprint-tri's a try. Shorter distances and an all around workout. Keep your fingers crossed.

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  43. Absolutely! Basically every time I'm training for a marathon and get to the 2nd 20 miler where it's not the first and exciting and it's not the last where it's almost marathon time, but it's the middle. And when I was training for my most recent things did not go well and it definitely went to my head, 'why am I doing this? Why do I spend so much time running?'
    And then I went out and did it again & it makes sense again.

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  44. Uh...yeah. I spent the entire summer slowly and carefully building mileage after an IT band issue: first rest/ice/stretch, then stretch/strength, then stretch/strength/CWX shorts/slow mileage build. I was finally up to 14 mile long runs, just about where I like to be.

    Then BANG. September hit. IT band doesn't like September, apparently. Couldn't even finish 3 miles last week. What did I do wrong?!?!?!

    So now, I'm living in a new country (just moved), am gifted with some extra training time, and have been banished back to Ground 0 (rest, walking, strength, stretch). BAH!!!

    Even more depressing? I'm a running coach. I coach people through stuff like this all. the. time.

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  45. If it makes you feel any better, you and I had the same run today. I didn't wake up until mile 4. My back bothered me. My shorts were made of lead. I felt groggy the whole time. I thought I might crap my pants from mile 5 to mile 8.92 (when I had to stop). I had to run into poison-ivy laced woods for a squat. I had frequent bathroom breaks for an hour after I was done. Has this happened before? Yes. Have I gotten through it? Yes. Does that make me feel any better about today? No.

    Also, you are an inspiration and a great runner who kicks my ass all the time... and who makes me feel better about my on-again, off-again stomach issues. So your running inspires me pretty much every day, even the bad days!

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  46. I never feel that way. But I'm a cyborg.

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  47. Oh my god, I so feel your pain. I've had lots of bad runs over the years where all I wanted was to lie down and cry. And right now I'm nursing a foot injury that's been dogging me for over three months and is going to force me to take 4 weeks off. And I want to cry about THAT. And I've been wondering if maybe my 47-year-old body just isn't made for running. But the thing is, when running is good it's sooooooo good that somehow I just can't hardly wait to get back out there again. And frankly, if I'm not a runner, I don't know who I am anymore. So take heart, hang in there, and keep running and writing about it so I can live vicariously through you for the next month. It will get better, it always does. Love your blog.

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  48. Oh god, I've had an entire summer of crap runs. Too hot and humid all the time, heart rate sky high so I never could run more than 4 miles and even then with lots of walk breaks. And now, now it's cooled down a little and the humidity is lower, I have an achilles problem. Makes me want to scream! Like Tracey above I think age might be part of it, I am over 50, but I've been careful, no more than 4 runs a week and never on consecutive days. Sigh!

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  49. You're not alone. I have had several crappy runs lately. For a while there I thought I was just a shitty runner but I just happened to have a blood test done at our local hospital's health fair a few weeks ago and my doc called me the same day of the test and it turns out I had a severe iron deficiency. I'm hoping a few weeks of improved diet & extra iron help out my energy issues.

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  50. I get so frustrated (okay jealous) with all the PRs and the "I barely trained but just went out there and ran a 3:50 marathon/1:45 half/22-minute 5K" (clearly those are the times I covet), while I keep getting slower and slower despite faithful training. I just ran my PW in Twin Cities (do you know how many PRs there were that weekend???), but I'm not ready to quit yet. I just want to find my speed back. Or even half my speed. And it drives me crazy when I feel like I'm cruising at an easy pace and that turns out to be 11-min...(even worse when it doesn't feel easy and it's 11-minute). Brain dump over.

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  51. yes! I have had many runs that were just blob or plain suck. I have had way too many runs where I had to stop to poop. I even had a time when I was on a competitive team that I hated it. I told my time that I was going to take some time to remember to like to run. Luckily it was getting close to summer and I had more freedom and I ran without a watch or a plan. I think I ended up running more that summer but not really sure with log entrys like- I was gone over an hour and ran past the creek so must have been somewhere in the 8-10 range. Something about not having a plan/goal that makes it better. Sometimes just run how you feel. Don't let the blog (that I love) pressure you to feel like you have to be the perfect runner all the time. We all have our cycles of feelings toward running.

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  52. I tend to go in "cycles" I find, with the type of running/training I'm doing. Some weeks, sprints really tick me off, and never seem to go as well as they should. Other weeks, my long slow runs are just bloody painful, and sometimes end up being very short and even slower runs. I'm noticing though, more and more (and a little under the influence of The Primal Blueprint), if I "listen to my body", my workouts tend to go much better. Don't feel much up for a sprint today? That's fine, I'll go for a jog instead. If the thought of a long slow run makes me want to fork my eyes out, that's the day to do some sprinting drills. I've found this works much better than following a prescribed program of doing X on this day and Y on that day every week for six weeks. (That said, I'm a very novice runner, so I know nothing about anything.) Running is supposed to be fun - so I just try to do it in a way that I anticipate will be the most fun for me on that given day.

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  53. if running was easy and effortless everyone could do it. the struggle is what makes u a runner.

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  54. Absolutely. It's worse when it doesn't feel like there is a reason for it. I'm sick of my foot. Do you think I could get it cut off and get one of those cool olympian ones?

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  55. Those are the days, I just stop and find something else to do, until I find myself saying...hey, lets run!

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  56. Yesterday I felt like poo all day. I needed to get in a 7 mile run. I finally motivated myself to run but I did it in on the TM. I was disappointed in myself that I didn't go outside in the beautiful weather we were having.
    At least you ran.

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  57. I've been running for about 2 1/2 years and I felt like this on a regular basis for about the first two years. In between injuries that I managed to have on a regular basis, it was hard, I was slow and I just thought I would never get the hang of it. I never had a runners high, and I wasn't able to get much higher than 25 miles / week without starting to hate it or things really hurting.

    The last two months have been a huge turning point for me and here's what I think contributed: throwing away my training plans. I ran as far as I felt, as fast as I felt. If I wasn't feeling it, I would keep it to an easy 4 or 5 miles. This ensured hard runs on the days that I was feel good mentally and physically, thereby setting myself up for success. Hydrate like a crazy person 120+ ounces / day. Start eating pickles - I don't eat much salt in general and I think this helped. Eating more carbs - I was using my fitness pal trying to drop a few lbs, and while I still watch my calories, my carbs are consistently 65% of my fat/protein/carb make up.

    Good luck!

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  58. I did a lousy 4 mile run yesterday with my husband...had to stop because my right pelvis was aching and I just didn't feel right, I also had a bad running day! Though it was only four miles- he looked at me and said "You still got off your butt and ran four miles! Not a lot of people 'just run four miles' " It did make me feel better, but because of my competitive nature, I was a very hard on myself. This post was needed, thank you for sharing your honesty!

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  59. Yes, I have had bad runs. However, I am in it for the count. I have been running solidly for 20 years and am 48 and actually started running when I was 11. I have no plans to ever quit. I take what it gives me. I can no longer run more than 3 days in a row or more than 5 days a week,sometimes I run only 4. I find it extremely important to listen and accept what your body tells you. My relationship to running varies in intensity and purpose thru the years and that works for me. I am currently sort of in-between things, not sure what I want out of the upcoming year so my training is reflecting that. Running more for joy vs specific purpose.

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  60. I seem to have nothing but "not so great" runs as of late. But I have to remind myself that I’m getting older, and the weather is getting cold, and I get a bit achy every year about this time. I wish it were different, and that I’d found running earlier in my life, but… if wishes were horses we’d be eating steak.

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  61. Here's what I think - it's PMS. You and I have been in 'sync' for a while, and I think that's all it is. Your body is preparing by increasing blood production, therefore everything is out of balance. Happens to me every 28-30 days. Plus, you sound emotional.
    Or...it was just a bad day. Time to move on and get a 'good' run in.

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  62. Sometimes I do feel like running is just not my thing. But then I take a few days off to concentrate on other activities and I miss running. So I know we are just having a fight and not breaking up. Everyone does have bad days. But there are usually not too many of them in a row and then you remember why you are a runner.

    The Kidless Kronicles

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  63. I always post about my shitty runs on facebook...both literally and figuratively. Perhaps we should be facebook friends so I can make you feel better.

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  64. I always post about my shitty runs on facebook...both literally and figuratively. Perhaps we should be facebook friends so I can make you feel better.

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  65. YES. I think we all have bad runs, and we've all had the runs during a run.

    I haven't been able to run more than 1 day in a row for the past several years because of an overuse injury. I wish I'd discovered cross training, yoga, strength training, and proper nutrition in my early 20s because my body is currently hating the miles I put in back then (8-10 a day ... 12-16 on the weekends, ya know, for fun — I didn't race).

    I hated hearing this, and I hate saying it because I hated hearing it so much, but yoga. Yoga is seriously the only thing that makes those regular running aches and pains go away. Hot yoga. No farting. :)

    I typically just do something else for a few days instead of running after I have a bad run like that. Or, I do something completely different (like a short run for speed that I know I can kill).

    Have a better run next time!

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    1. also, i just remembered you're already a yogi, or at least dabbling, so ignore my statement about assuming you'd hate it. just do more of it ... esp. right after a run. or during it if you need a break.

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  66. Not so great or great, it was done. Can't change the past, so use it for the future to better prepare yourself for that mental hurdle. Sometimes I love the little aches and pains as a reminder of what I have accomplished.
    The caption should be "How they did GYN exams in the 'olden days.'"
    Tomorrow is another day, and every day our feet hit the floor, and we can breathe, stand, sit, talk, see and hear, it's all good. It's really easy to get down on myself, it's harder to climb out of the hole, so stop it before you're digging your way out!

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    1. Love your caption!

      Still breathing over here...

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  67. you know what is great? Not that you had a CRAP run...but that you SAY so. Jesus. This past summer i had the shittiest run. stopped after 16km. Went home bawling. Felt like a freaking failure. Called my running bestie (who lives 3 hrs away so we rarely run together) and she said. Ok. Snivel today. Your next one will be better. Today sucked, and that is ok. you aren't injured, you just gotta get out there and show em (and yourself) how its done next time. You always need those people in your life. You need those of us who can commiserate and say...can you believe it, i had to stop to poop 3 bloody times today WTF is up with that. What a shitty run (literally).
    That's what i love about your posts. You say the shit i say...and so few peeps i know do! I wish i lived closer so i could laugh my ass off with you on a run sometime...

    Have a better run next time! xx

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  68. We all have those days. It's a bummer when it's in training but it's a REAL BUMMER when you have that kind of a run in a race. So, it could have been worse.
    As for that 20 year old body - you're not alone. Is there anyway to get that youth back? Do things right and not over indulge thinking we're invincible?

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  69. YES! I had a horrible run on Saturday. Four weeks before my next marathon and everything from my waist down hurts. It's so hard to remember the great runs when you have a horrible one.

    Amby Burfoot wrote a great article in the latest edition of Runner's World. He's been running for 50 years, so I'm pretty sure he knows what he's talking about ;) His take on injuries: "the vast majority of injured runners have soft-tissue problems - that is, sore muscles, strained tendons, joint inflammation, and the like. These are not broken bones or ACL tears. You don't need a splint or a surgeon. You just need to give you body time to repair itself."

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  70. Well, I had a bad three mile run today. I feel like three miles barely counts as a run and mine sucked! I've enough bad runs in my short running life to put the, in the camp of the mental game. I figure pushing through a shit run and getting it done is really a day that I'm just working on the mental aspect of my running, instead of the physical. That way, I can be happy that I didn't give up and keep it positive.

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  71. Thank you for posting this! I feel like a lot of the blogs I read are about great runs, but no one talks about the bad ones that much. I have been struggling with running now that I have bad shin splints and have been ordered to stop for a while. It's been pretty tough, so reading this post helped me feel better. Thanks!

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  72. Perspective! I just got home from the doctor and I have a meniscus tear that is 50% and surgery is Thursday. I will be out at least 6 weeks and then running will probably be cut way back. I'm out both 10 milers this fall. I broke down and cried Saturday, but am better now, I think. So, a bad run is better than no run!!! Tomorrow is a new day!

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  73. Perspective check! Yes, it might have been bad, hurt, worst time yet for the mileage, but you're still running. Just got back from the doctor and my MRI shows a 50% bucket tear in my meniscus. I am missing out on both of my 10 mile runs this fall and best case is running 10Ks from here on out. I will for sure be out 6 weeks of running if not longer. If they can repair it and it's close to a blood flow (however it doesn't appear that way), it will be 4-6 weeks of no weight on that leg and then a really slow recovery..... So, yes, maybe a bad run, but wouldn't I take that right now.....

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    1. That's horrible! I can't go more than a mile and That's really pushing it. I've been demoted to walking while I try to get in for not MRI 's. I had articular cartilage floating around and a meniscus tear. Not.Cool. we can gimp together! :-)

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  74. I'm currently having this problem right now. I had knee surgery almost 2 years ago but my knee hasn't been right since then and I've had to give up my usual physical activity level. Always wanted to run but told myself u couldn't until I got the urge to just go for it to help lose a few pounds. Now running a measly mile results in unbearable knee pain and I wonder if I'll ever be able to run without crying when I hobble back to the house. I'm going to have to set up another appointment to have another MRI (I've had around 4-5). Totally get where you're coming from.

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    1. nooooo! I broke down in tears Saturday when all my friends were running races and were out and about. So hard! I have had many people tell me they have recovered just fine from this and others that can't run at all..... time will tell..... good luck to you!

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  75. Beth, We need to have coffee so you can see what pitiful looks and sounds like and then you will love donuts again. You know about my breathing issues. Well about 4 months ago, after years of messing with this crap, the doctor final says, 'Stop running' and 'Stop all aerobic activity, even walking if you cough'. My airway was so raw, it needed to heal. So unlike being able to cross-train through an injury, I was relegated to the couch! And it is amazing how fast you lose it all. Finally about 2 weeks ago, I got the OK to again be active. Well it is SO freaking hard to 'run' a few yards and gasp and think I can ever get to honestly running again. I was nowhere near you level of conditioning, so I expected it to be hard, but this sucks. I want so badly to do another run where it is fun and easy even if that is a 12 minute mile. I have thrown out all numbers, I just want to run and feel good. I told myself to not really measure before and after (and certainly NOT against others!!) until at least next spring, so I am trying to just enjoy the movement. But my breathing still sucks and running is still hard, yet I like it, or used to like it and want to again. I guess come spring I will have a better answer for you. You fell off your horse. Just try to get back on and not think about the numbers, just the freedom and your surroundings. Our surroundings do suck, don't they!! :)

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  76. Ugh, Beth! I have had so many crappy runs like you write about. Your husband is so right -- we ALL have bad days. Ang has to remind of that often because I start to get angry and beat myself up. You are not alone, sister!

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  77. I'm right there with you. Ran a 10 mile race yesterday and peed on myself 3 times. For me, physically I am fine (except for the occasional flooding in my pants) but mentally, I continue to beat myself up. I even had to go so far as to try and trick myself into believing I was running a half marathon so I could finish the last mile! If I told myelf that I had 4 miles to go, I would keep running, but if I thought that I was on my last mile, I would talk myself into walking!

    I'm training for my first full marathon and it is a daily struggle to keep my confidence level up...

    Love your blog! Thanks for all the wonderful advice.

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  78. Ah yes, I have had many a bad day with running. I can't tell you the number of times I've almost ended it. When that happens, I usually take a couple of weeks off and do other stuff. Yoga, cycling, weight training, whatever. After a couple of weeks I usually find that I really miss it and whatever the issue was has resolved itself. If it happens while I'm in training for something, I will sometimes have a meltdown but, most of the time I can figure out why my run has been shitty (usually due to dehydration, shitty nutrition, fatigue or getting sick). It's ok to be frustrated and upset. Given all the work you've been doing, I'd say that this was a one off. Maybe take an extra days rest and see how you feel.

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  79. I feel your pain. I have bad days too. I'm working on not being too hard on myself and at least I'm running, and not sitting around being lazy.

    You are hilarious, by the way.

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  80. THANK YOU for this post! Running has never been easy for me, and I'm not sure it ever will be. It can be really frustrating to read some blogs because it seems that they can do so much so effortlessly. This can be motivating and I feel happy for people who accomplish their goals, but at the same time I do compare myself to them and feel inadequate. I sometimes get the mindset of "it's not fair!" It's not fair that this person can run a super fast mile. It's not fair that so-and-so can run for hours on end and feel great. It's not fair my lungs feel like they're collapsing in on me barely a mile into a run. Once I've had my pity-party, I wonder why do I even try? I try because I have experienced good runs a few times in my life, where everything goes perfectly and I can actually breathe worth a damn. I try because it's so rewarding to actually feel the progress I'm making and seeing the positive changes in my body. I have to remind myself of how far I've come rather than comparing myself to experienced runners! I also have to remind myself that even though I'm not naturally good at running, I am naturally good at other things like yoga and swimming. For me, it's best to just take it one run at a time and try to just compete with myself!

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  81. We ALL have bad runs sometimes.

    I know there's some overused quote about bad runs making you appreciate the good ones. But I'm sure you know it. So I'll just say: I'm sorry. That sucks. I hope your next run is awesome.

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  82. YES. I definitely have bad runs sometimes. I agree with you though that sometimes it is frustrating to have a bad run and it messes with your mind. I hope your next run feels back on track!

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  83. I hear you. I've been through a jag of injuries in the past 6 months and right now am waiting for a stubborn IT band to heal. I want so badly to just be able to run and enjoy the fall. But every time I've attempted running in the past month has been miserable and ended with me in tears, or at least wanting to be. I'm finally feeling better, but I'm afraid to get out there again for fear it will all go to s**t.

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  84. I had one of those days on Sunday. Going into my race (cross-country 5K) I wasn't feeling great, and that turned into an accurate prediction of how my race would go. I ran slowly and felt like I was working my absolute hardest. About halfway through, I started wondering whether I should just give up and maybe running isn't for me. I had to remind myself that I love the sport and we all have bad days and I just have to push through. It was the most miserable 30 minutes I've had in a while. Just the fact that it was 30 minutes should tell you something right there. D:

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  85. Actually, Beth I think am going through a post marathon depression right now - I don't know why - I finished strong, I ran the whole race, it was my first marathon...4:46 w/ plenty of gas left and not even sore. . . I should be happy! Maybe some of us runners are missing the point of running ~ by the way, I've been following your blog for the last two years and so many times your blogs have made for good laughs w/ my running group and inspiring - hence my 1st marathon. Thank you.

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  86. I found this blog through a google search and it's exactly what I needed! I had a bad race on Sunday. It was my 4th half marathon and a personal worst. Leading up to the race I was averaging under 10:30 to 10:45 minute miles. During the race my body just couldn't be pushed anymore and I wound up walking the last 1/3 of the race, finishing in an awful 2:45. I am still bummed about the time, but I am glad I listened to my body because I could have injured myself. In the past, I would stop running after a half until I decided to train for another one. But I'm going to conitunue to run because I now realize how good running makes me feel...bad days and all!

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  87. Totally been there! And on the Facebook note, more people should post stuff like that!

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  88. very encouraging, and exactly the way I felt today.

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