Last night was my first hill-training night. We do a 3k run, but include in that 4x400m hills (which don’t count as part of the 3 k, so essentially we run to the hill, run up the hill, then run one block to the next intersection where we turn and go down the hill turn again and go back to the base of the hill and then run up again. Repeat until we’ve done the hill 4 times, then run back to the store). I was able to run up the hill twice, then I got tunnel vision and couldn’t hear anything and my trainer caught me just before I hit the ground. She said “Stop.” I said, “I only need to catch my breath.” She said. “No, you need to stop”. So we compromised. I walked while the rest of the group ran.
I felt horrible. I could not figure out what was wrong. I mean, I’m not superwoman, but generally speaking, as long as I take whatever challenge I have put before myself steadily and slowly, I can usually do it. Such and unexpected and complete failure to meet this challenge had me thinking that maybe I just can’t do this. Maybe I’m not young enough/fit enough/trying hard enough. Maybe running 10k is an outrageous goal for me. Maybe I just cannot do this.
I must have expressed some of this aloud because next thing you know I hear my trainer saying: “Nope, that’s not it. You are strong. You run well. We have people older than you who can do this. You can do this. Just not tonight. You are having a bad night. That’s it. Not completing 800 m is not going to affect anything in the grand scheme of things.”
They were sensible words, but I was not entirely convinced and spent the rest of the evening pretty much moping about and second guessing my commitment to running.
But then, this morning, I woke up in the throes of a full-on cold/flu. Scratchy throat, congested nasal passages, headache, and in general, just plain old achy everywhere. But I gotta say, I also feel pretty darn happy. My trainer was right. It was just an off night. I CAN do this!
Sometimes, our own minds are our own worst enemies.