Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Weekend To Forget

Hi everyone. Hope you all had a happy long weekend.
It’s been a while. I know. But I have a good excuse. Have you ever had one of those days where you feel as if the whole world is turning against you and all you want to do is just hit the sack so the day could be over? Well, if you extend that to a long weekend instead of just 24 hours, that’s the kind of weekend I just had. And since I don’t like to use my blog as a venting forum, I kept waiting and waiting for my bad streak to turn so I can post about something a bit more positive. Except now the weekend’s over, everyone's back to work and the whole bad luck spell still has not yet worn off.
We’re tired of waiting. The show must go on. I’m thinking now that if I were to actually write down the negative events of the past weekend that maybe some purging of evil spirits will take place and the aura of optimism and positivity that I usually travel around with will come back to me once again. Well, it’s either that or staring at the television wondering which of the kids I saw in clinic on Friday afternoon was really Harry Potter in disguise…

Saturday – Woke up early on a bright sunny day for an 18-miler on the west side of Manhattan. It was the first long run in my training for the San Francisco Marathon training so I really wanted to start off on a good note. I ran with a friend for the first 13 miles to make sure my pace would be easy and slow. These first miles were pleasant enough, maintaining a 8:30 pace throughout. After my friend left, I tried to pick up the pace for the last 5, but for some reason wasn’t able to. I was expecting to run around 6:45-7:00 for this stretch, but only managed to average 7:15 for this stretch which annoyed me to no end. For some reason, I was extremely fatigued and felt extremely slow, even though I knew I could handle the distance. The most tell-tale sign was when I found myself checking my Garmin every quarter mile after mile 14. I usually don’t do that until the last mile or two in a long run. It was so bad I found myself doubting whether I was ready to train for a marathon during the last mile. Needless to say, it was not at all the productive LR I was expecting to propel me into marathon training.
The rest of the afternoon was spent touring the just opened Sports Museum of New York with my little brother. Although the exhibits were fun and exciting and I learned a lot about stuff I never knew I didn’t know, it still required me to spend 4 hours on my feet…which is not so much fun after a painful long run.

Sunday – Both my legs were still complaining about my 18-mile hell run the day before, but since I had an easy 6 planned for the day and wanted to use Monday as a rest day, I figured I’d run it slow and hopefully feel better about things towards the end of the run. Alas, I waited too long and only got out to run at noon. As such, the weather was hazy and just not conducive to a relaxing run. So even though I chose a path by the water (the East Side Drive over to Randall’s Island), there was hardly a breeze in the air, and it was all I could do not to suffocate in the humidity. I got my six in, again at a slower than normal 7:28 pace. (I know most of you would not agree, but 7:28 is very slow for me; as evidenced by the two guys who made eyes at me while passing by with their jogging strollers!) If one slow running day is bad luck, two slow running days makes a pattern…
After washing up and grabbing lunch two hours too late, I proceed to watch my favorite baseball team, the NY Mets, put forth another lackluster performance on the field on their way to yet another series loss. It was so disheartening to see the myriad of fundamental mistakes and general lack of interest as exhibited by the everyday players that although I had tickets to the next day’s game against the first place Florida Marlins, I was seriously debating whether I should even bother showing up.

Monday – Thank goodness for the rest day, because I’m not so sure I could psychologically handle another bad run this weekend. I took advantage by sleeping until really late and eating fast food for lunch (which I hadn’t done since last year!) Then I proceeded to watch my alma matar Johns Hopkins lose to Syracuse in the NCAA Lacrosse Championships. I’m not usually a lacrosse fan (as evidenced by the fact that I had to wikipedia all the rules while the game was going on) but since they never won a championship while I was in school there, I thought I should at least watch when they were in the finals. Unfortunately, they were just outmanned, outhustled, and outcoached today.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, I actually took the time to meet up with my best friend and his family to take the train all the way to Queens to watch the Mets lose…again! In actuality, I should’ve known better and left after the second inning, because they didn’t score again after that. While I was there, the chants of “Fire Willie!” from the crowd was louder than the public address guy announcing the lineup. Disgusted doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel about the team right now.

Tuesday – It was a tough day today at the hospital. It almost always is the first day back from a long weekend. I got yelled at by a mom who wondered why I wasn’t at work yesterday to help her daughter (Apparently, they don’t celebrate Memorial Day in Hispanic culture) and the train decided to break down on me in the middle of my commute. Still, I found myself exactly where I wanted to be at the appointed hour…in Central Park with a scheduled 7 mile tempo run to boot. I needed this today in the worst way; not only to eradicate the stench from my stinky slow runs this past weekend, but also to erase the doubts I was starting to have about my fitness and my training.
The run started out well. I ran 6:43, 6:30, and 6:34 for the first 3 miles. But then the unthinkable happened…the skies opened up. Less than 2 minutes later, I was caught in a torrential thunderstorm with water droplets the size of golf balls attacking me from all sides. I usually have no problems running in the rain. In fact, sometimes I purposely head out to run in the rain just to cool off. But at times like today, when the ground was so wet and the rain so heavy that I couldn’t see more than 5 feet in front of me and my running shoes were starting to slip and lose traction, it really was not safe out there to run anymore. So yet again, I was thwarted from my attempts at redemption and had to cut my tempo run from 7 miles to a measly 4. And as if that wasn’t irritating enough, about fifteen minutes after I had quit and started to walk home, the rain suddenly stopped and the dark sky gave way to blue clouds and bright sunshine once again. What the heck?

Anyway, there you have it, my faithful readers…a review of my misfortunes over the past four days. Don’t feel sorry for me tough, please. I realize this is just small stuff in the overall scheme of things, but uurrgghh…
I hope this purging exercise will be enough to get me out of this mega slump that I’m in. Otherwise, I might have put in a call to ask Giambi for his golden thong to wear. On second thought, isn’t he only batting something like .230? Okay, never mind then.
Hope you all had a safe and fun Memorial Day weekend!


Run For Life said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Run For Life said...

I hate when that happens, it's so irritating.

I'm not so sure I want to click that "golden thong" link, haha. Maybe you could get some golden laces instead.

Hope your runs turn around pronto.

Betsy said...

Everybody gets a bad run here and there. Don't let it get to you.

nwgdc said...

i would suggest you stay away from anything giambi has used in the past or present for performance enhancement. speaking of which...steroids are known to do a certain something to a certain part of a male's anatomy. and now...a golden thong? I'll let you connect the dots.
thanks for the kind words about the BQ. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Meg said...

Hello, I found your blog a couple weeks ago and I've enjoyed it. Suddenly I have a bunch comments to this post! :)
I hear you on the Mets...at least you get to watch them. In MI all I get to do is watch the L's show up every morning, and watch their ranking slip. And I share an office with a Braves fan. I'm thinking about sending Reyes my cable bill because I only have cable in case they get into the playoffs!
Why would you want to touch anything that has been near a Yankee ass? Didn't Hopkins win the National Championship last year?
Anyway, I hope things turn around for you soon! Little things always build up when you think you've had a bad few days!

The Laminator said...

Thanks all for your comments. Some quick responses from me...

Kirsten - golden laces is an idea I've thought about actually. I found they sell these at a local running store, so might be an idea!

Betsy - no...the bad runs haven't gotten to me. I know they happen just to make the good runs ROCK!

nwgdc - yeah, i'm definitely staying miles away from anything giambi might use...just in case his steroids can be absorbed aerially...anyway, congrats on your BQ again!

Meg - hey welcome. We needs the Mets to turn the ship around pronto. My comments about Giambi's thong was just a reflection of how badly I want my bad streak to end...not that I'd actually consider wearing it. Also, yeah, Hopkins won the last couple of years, but I never got to watch it so I really wanted to witness this one. Besides, they beat Duke in the previous game which was the #1 seed, so I thought they would actually bring home the trophy...Anyway, thanks for the encouragement and the comment.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lam - Seems like we had similar long run experiences this weekend. I love my long runs and having a bad one is so demoralizing.

I usually drown my running sorrows in a bowl of Coconut Bliss ice cream and read the "Chi of Running."

I guess we're also supposed to remember that our bodies and performance won't steadily improve. We'll have off days and bad days and good days and great days... It's not very reassuring, but apparently it's true.

Debbie said...

The Hopkins loss was sad!! I really thought they were going to win that....!

sRod said...

Slumps happen. I find that they happen more often when you have back to back to back races. You'll pull through...just don't listen to those demons in your head.

Nitmos said...

Your purge is complete. Putting them down on paper (or web paper) expels them from your body and ou are free to move on. Good luck!

BeachRunner411 said...

My wife and I enjoy your blog, and advice, but this is my first comment here. So hi! As a brand-newbie runner I have had no bad run experiences yet. But I look forward to a lifetime of running experiences both good and bad (mostly good I hope). I am sure you will turn it around real fast.

Reid said...

If the start of that tempo run is any indication, I think you'll be out of that slump in no time.

Anonymous said...

If it wasn't for the rain, I think you would have risen out of your "slump." As for the golden thong, I think Jeter and Damon are in line...maybe just that thought is enough to get one out of a slump. Anyway,
I have a feeling your next run is going to be a great one.

Landon said...

hey...How did you get a picture behind your blog title? I've been trying to do that for ages!

The Laminator said...

Thanks all for the feedback--

Heather - Yeah, that's what they tell me too, but I think that's what drives me to train so hard. I keep telling myself that one day I will no longer be able to do this...but today is NOT that day!

Debbie - Yes, I was saddened by the Hopkins loss. They were doing so well in the first half, then disintegrated towards the end.

sRod - Don't worry, I am careful not to race too much because I have had some bad experiences in my rookie running season when I entered three races in three weeks. The demons are another matter altogether...we battle each and every day!

Beachrunner - Welcome. Thanks for the comment. It's nice to see new faces around here. I hope you don't have to deal with bad runs for a really long time. Also, I'm very jealous that you get to run on a beach.

Reid - Yes, my aborted run irritated me because I knew I was on my way to breaking the spell. Luckily, I got it done today so no worries.

d10 - Yeah, apparently, there's hot demand for that gold thong. Who knew? That's alright, I'm glad I broke my spell tonight and didn't have to resort to such drastic measures.

Landon - It's actually quite easy. I'll hook you up.

MissAllycat said...

I hear you barking, big dog. I've been in a running slump for far too long. Glad to hear you busted out. I think I may need to resort to the golden sports bra. :)

Clicky Web Analytics