What constitutes a “runner”?
Is it a person who runs marathons? Someone who runs everyday? Someone who runs to stay in shape?
I believe you become a runner when you consider yourself one. And as of Saturday night, I am a runner.
Let’s backtrack a moment. I have a full-time job as the social media coordinator for Neckerman Insurance in Madison, but I’ve worked as a beverage cart girl/bartender at Pleasant View Golf Course for the past 8 summers…yes…8 summers. I started right after high school and I keep going back for more. What can I say…I like the tips and the free golf!
Anyway, I worked a 9-hour beverage cart shift Saturday and was drained at the end of the day. But Sunday’s forecast was calling for severe thunderstorms, so I knew I had to get it done Saturday. When I got home, I changed, popped two electrolyte tablets and headed out the door.
Before taking off, I decided to try the run 9 minutes, walk 1 minute tactic. I’ve tried this before but I wasn’t a fan. I didn’t like the idea of walking when I wasn’t tired yet. But my sister-in-law, Lauren, recommends it. Lauren has completed FOUR Ironman’s. So any advice she gives, I’m going to take.
The first 3 miles were mediocre. I wasn’t too tired, I just wasn’t in it mentally. And THEN, around mile 3, I saw a snake on the Pheasant Branch Trail. One thing you need to know about me: I’m incredibly terrified of snakes. I can’t even look at them on TV. You know the snake in Harry Potter? Yup, can’t even look at that one. It’s a serious phobia and I’ll never get over it. On the plus side, this snake was only about 10 inches long and it resembled a worm so I didn’t get too worked up. But you can bet that was on my mind the rest of the trail.
So I kept trucking along. I hit mile 5 and started to feel great. At mile 7, I felt even better. By the time I hit the half-way mark, I was definitely affected by the runner’s high. I just remember being so proud of myself and thinking, “you’re actually going to do this.”
When I hit mile 11 I didn’t even want to take my 1 minute walk, but I forced myself to stay on track, especially since I still had 5 miles to go. The rest of the run went pretty darn great, considering the distance. I didn’t feel fatigued until mile 14, but I kept it up. I finished 16 miles in 2 hours, 36 minutes and 38 seconds.
I have never been so happy while running. For the first time in my life, I wasn’t dreading the remaining miles. And also for the first time, I realized I can finish this marathon. When I hit mile 8, I remember thinking, “you are a runner.” I’ve talked to so many people who love to hit the pavement to clear their head or those who run miles and miles without hating it. I’ve always been so envious of them, but on Saturday, I was one of them.
Now, to the bad news:
I currently feel like I’m on my deathbed. I woke up yesterday morning with a horrible sore throat. The only reason I didn’t go to Urgent Care last night was because it was closed.
I woke up this morning still feeling miserable with a cold and headache in addition to my sore throat. So, I took my first ever sick day. EVER. I’m even including my high school jobs.
I went to the doctor this afternoon and turns out, I do not have strep throat…yay! But I do have a virus and an ear infection. I stopped at Walgreens and stocked up on soup, OJ, Kleenex, cough drops…and of course ice cream. Now I just have to take these horse pills for the next 10 days…
I have not moved from my couch (besides my doc appointment) since yesterday morning at 9 AM. I watched 8 movies, Jeopardy, the Voice, Family Fued, and the Punk’d episode with Zac Efron three times.
I am thrilled to get out of my house tomorrow. If I can.