The Worst One

Ugh. This picture sums it up.

I just had the worst run yet of my training. I think the truth it I’m getting burnt out and am just ready for the race itself to be here. Two week from today… come onnnnnn March 26.

Let’s rewind a bit. I started the day with some oats, my new pre-run fuel of choice. I made it in the classiest way I know how – in the microwave.

1/2 cup rolled oats, 1 cup water, salt, and a banana in the mix. I’ve been trying to make sure to eat some salt before my runs because I’m a super salty sweater. But more on that later.

Off I went all geared up and the day was actually perfect running weather. The first few miles went by pretty good and I ate some lemon-lime sports beans around mile 5. After that, it went downhill. Physically I felt totally fine, but mentally I was having a really rough time wanting to finish the run. I let myself walk a little bit, which I hate to do because for me, it sours the rest of the run. If I take a walking break, I just want to walk for the rest of the time rather than start running again. Case in point, after that small walking break, it was terrible. I forced myself to get to 9 miles, and then I walk/ran the last two, mostly walked. I was trying to go fast but all I wanted was for the run to be over, and then finally, it was.

  • Mile 1: 9:07
  • Mile 2: 9:40
  • Mile 3: 9:41
  • Mile 4: 9:45
  • Mile 5: 10:23 (including .1 mile walking break)
  • Mile 6: 9:58
  • Mile 7: 9:45
  • Mile 8: 10:09 (struggling)
  • Mile 9: 10:09 (struggling)
  • Mile 10: 11:13 (walk/run)
  • Mile 11: 11:02 (walk/run)

So the good part about all this is I finished the 11 miles even though I really didn’t want to. Also, I did it in 1 hour 50  minutes 51 seconds, which is an average of a 10:05 pace. My first half marathon was a 10:21 pace, so even if I mentally struggle as bad on race day (which I hope I don’t!) I can still PR in the half.

Another good thing was I had a smoothie waiting for me when I got in from my run, which made me force a smile.

Can you tell how much I don’t mean that? Smile

Have you ever tried freezing a smoothie before? You mix all the ingredients together in a blender, pour it in a bowl, and then ltierally place it in the freezer for a few hours. The texture of the smoothie turns slushy/sorbet-esque and is SO delicious to eat with a spoon.

In the mix:

  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 medium banana
  • handful of frozen strawberries
  • handful of frozen pineapple
  • vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup peanut flour turned into PB by adding 2 tbsp water and some salt(16 grams protein!)

So delicious.

You know how I mentioned above how salty of a sweater I am? A lot of times on my long runs, I literally have salt crusted on my face afterwards. Don’t look at this picture if you’re eating…

See that around my nose?? SALT! Gross. I’ve been trying to eat salt before and after my runs to replenish because of this little issue.

On with the weekend!

Have you ever had a bad run in training? How do you recover?

And, what’s your favorite post run or post workout snack or meal?

34 Comments on The Worst One

  1. Holly
    March 12, 2011 at 3:57 pm (10 years ago)

    Beth I am also a salty sweater!!! You are not alone 🙂 I notice it on my hands and my water bottle!

    I have bad runs all the time — but there are plenty of good ones to balance it all out. Usually if I have a really bad run, that means my NEXT run is fabulous!

    My favorite post run snack/meal — after a short run, I have a shake (almond milk/banana/whey protein/chia seeds) and after a long run I have the same shake (plus PB) with 2 eggs and a piece of toast.

  2. runeatreality
    March 12, 2011 at 4:02 pm (10 years ago)

    you make your own pb with peanut flour?? this is such a great idea – i got some in a giftbag and wasn’t sure what to do with it. thanks for including this in your frozen smoothie, which is another thing i’ll try soon!

    • Beth
      March 12, 2011 at 4:03 pm (10 years ago)

      Making it into PB is the best!! You get so much bang for your buck, though its not quite the real thing. 🙂

  3. Victoria (District Chocoholic)
    March 12, 2011 at 4:12 pm (10 years ago)

    I’ve had a lot of training slumps over the years (especially when swimming in college). A couple of tips:
    -If you can afford new workout gear, sometimes that brightens things up. Especially if you get, say, a bright pink swimsuit (don’t judge me).
    -A massage is a great way to remove residual stress that exacerbates burnout. If you can’t afford one/find a discounted source, use a tennis ball to release particularly active trigger points.
    -Make sure you are getting enough sleep. Burnout sometimes reduces the quality of your sleep, so use things like lavender oil/earplugs to make sure you get a restful night of sleep. Maybe even invest in new pillows.

    • Beth
      March 12, 2011 at 4:14 pm (10 years ago)

      Haha. I like tip #1 the best. I should definitely get a hot pink swimsuit and run in it!! =)

      Kidding aside, those are some great tips. I should probably invest in some new pillows – that’s a good idea!

  4. Marci
    March 12, 2011 at 4:23 pm (10 years ago)

    At least bad runs build character so you know you can tolerate and get through them. Either way, you checked it off the list!

    • Beth
      March 12, 2011 at 4:24 pm (10 years ago)

      True. I’m just glad it’s over and it’s not hanging over my head for tomorrow.

  5. Theodora
    March 12, 2011 at 4:39 pm (10 years ago)

    After bad long runs, I come home and bitch and blog about them and hope and pray that the next one will be better.

  6. ethansarah
    March 12, 2011 at 4:48 pm (10 years ago)

    I actually eat a whole packet of salt right before a long run (pretty much anything over 7 miles). If I don’t, I end up feeling really sick and useless the rest of the day. It’s disgusting to eat that much salt, but it really helps my recovery. Keep it up! Runners will always have some lag days.

  7. Groff's Girl
    March 12, 2011 at 4:50 pm (10 years ago)

    I was ready to start my first try at 5 miles this morning, as I was getting ready to go (literally 30 minutes ago) the baby woke up. The more I have to sit around and wait, the more tired I get and it really gets me in a cranky running mood. I want to GO first thing when I wake up, otherwise I get sluggish. I have peanut flour from NutsOnline and it does NOT taste even close to peanut butter when I mix it up. It is very ‘fruity’ tasting….any ideas of how I could make it better??

  8. Kristin
    March 12, 2011 at 4:52 pm (10 years ago)

    It’s possible that you went out too fast…it’s usually better to do long runs at a slower pace and save your speed work for shorter distances. Good luck and have fun in your half!

    • Beth
      March 12, 2011 at 4:59 pm (10 years ago)

      Yeah you’re right – I probably should have done the first mile slower. But I have been averaging 9:30 on long runs without really trying too hard so I didn’t feel like I was pushing myself pace wise.

  9. Lisa
    March 12, 2011 at 6:28 pm (10 years ago)

    They can’t all be winners! Some runs are just brutal. The salt thing is weird. I’ve had hard runs where I had salt crusted on my face too.

  10. Amy @ Second City Randomness
    March 12, 2011 at 8:35 pm (10 years ago)

    We’ve all got the couple of bad runs. They really really suck out the motivation… but for every bad run, there’s always a really really good one!

  11. Kayla
    March 13, 2011 at 3:18 am (10 years ago)

    I get salty skin like that too! I hate it!!

  12. Stephanie @ The Cookie Battle
    March 13, 2011 at 9:37 am (10 years ago)

    I’ve had a bad training run before, but good for you for pushing through it! At least it’s over with and you have the race to look forward to! Good luck!

  13. Rachael
    March 13, 2011 at 5:20 pm (10 years ago)

    Me too. I end up with salt all over my legs, arms and face. In the past I would lose so much salt that my calves would cramp… a lot. Still trying to up my salt intake before and after exercise. It’s a work in progress.

    After a bad run, I have a bath, and curl up with a good book, or phone a friend and go out for a cup of tea. Or go shopping!

  14. Kalli
    March 13, 2011 at 5:48 pm (10 years ago)

    girl you ran 11 miles! you rocked it… you felt awful but you will recover and come out stonger from this. yesterday i had a really tough bike ride. i just never felt good the whole way.

  15. Vanessa
    March 13, 2011 at 9:24 pm (10 years ago)

    i had a workout like this today.. the whole time i was like is this over? I wasn’t running tho, so i can’t compare. I was in a zumba class and I had so many things on my mind about all the things i had to do today.

  16. cindylu
    March 14, 2011 at 6:07 am (10 years ago)

    I’ve definitely had bad runs while training, especially in my current cycle. Part of the recovery was trying to figure out what was wrong. Was I dehydrated? Did I not sleep enough before? Was I still feeling the effects of having donated a pint of blood (BAD idea while training for a marathon)? PMS? I don’t let it affect me too much mentally, I just make note of it in my training log and move on. I think the bad runs come with the good runs.

    As for post-run snack, I love chocolate milk. If I have them on hand, oranges are also super delicious.

  17. Monica
    March 14, 2011 at 9:01 am (10 years ago)

    Sorry to hear about the hard run! I think sometimes we can be our own worst critique and forget how far our body has really come in helping us reach our fitness goals.

    Whenever I get down on myself about a run that didn’t turn out ideal, I close my eyes and remember running the mile test in high school and the fact that I had to walk the entire thing. It helps me feel how strong I really am these days.

    Good luck finishing up training!

  18. Liz
    March 14, 2011 at 9:46 am (10 years ago)

    I’m so ready for training to be over too. Sorry you had a bad run, but the good news is that you will be done with LRs soon!

  19. amybart
    March 14, 2011 at 12:11 pm (10 years ago)

    Wow! I just stumbled across your blog (I just started mine and was over at Priorfatgirl reading when I clicked on yours!) and this post TOTALLY rang true with me in so many ways. I just recently started running again. I’m only up to running 5 miles right now, but my friends are trying to get me to run a half marathon on May 1st. The most I’ve ever run is 9 miles and that was 10 years ago…so I’m hesitant to commit because I’m unsure that running 13.1 is something I’m capable of. Any advice for someone who has never run a half marathon?
    I totally had a sucky run yesterday, too, and felt that it was because I hadn’t fueled up enough. Love seeing the suggestions for what you eat to have enough energy. Keep posting them because they totally are giving me ideas!!
    Oh! and I’m a salty sweater…though I had NO idea that is what it was til your post!
    Thanks for being so inspiring!!!

    • Beth
      March 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm (10 years ago)

      Hi Amy!

      I think May 1st is definitely enough time to build up to a half marathon if you’re already at 5 miles. I know it’s tempting to think about how far you ran however many years ago, but it’s most important to focus on your body NOW and what you can do. My strategy is to build up 1 mile per week on my long runs on the weekend – so you could do 6 next weekend and be up to 10 by no problem before the race. A lot of training plans have you go up to only 10 miles for your first half, and then adrenalin will carry you over the finish line. You have enough time to build up to 11 or 12 though if you wanted to. Keep me posted on what you decide but I say go for it! Another tip – not sure the last time you ran a race, but I’d suggest signing up for a shorter race before the half just to remind yourself what its like to race and pace yourself! Good luck!!!

  20. Erin
    March 14, 2011 at 3:47 pm (10 years ago)

    I’m a salty sweater too. It took me forever to figure out what it was!

  21. Elizabeth@GenuineEfforts
    March 16, 2011 at 10:04 pm (10 years ago)

    I’m a salty sweater too! I didn’t know it was a thing- I just figured I ate too much salt so I was sweating out the excess.


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