Imagine a small child, lips pursed, nose wrinkled, eyes tearing up, head actually moving backward in disgust, as her mom tries to give her a spoonful of nasty-tasting medicine.
This is roughly the attitude with which I set out to do my speed workout this morning.
There are only two training weekends left before the National Half Marathon, and I’ve committed myself (in my head, at least) to running part of the course on a 10-miler next weekend. Which left me with only one real choice today: hit the treadmill, hard, for one last speed workout.
Oh, the excuses I thought of! I told myself it was too beautiful and sunny to run inside. Then, I told myself I’d have to find a good speed workout course outside. Then, it was back to Plan A, but I told myself I should mix things up and find a new treadmill workout. Then, after sucking it up and putting on my running clothes to head downstairs, I watched at least 15 minutes of “Balls of Fury” with Steve to stall even longer.
Finally, I sucked it up, made like a Nike ad and just did it.
Guess what? It was great! The kind of great that makes you wonder if the treadmill needs to be recalibrated or something. I had set out to do four one-mile repeats — one more than my standard three — at something like 7:30-minute-mile pace. I ended up doing more like an average of 7:15-minute miles, with long spurts of 6:58-minute-mile pace (superhuman for me, if I have to do more than one mile!). And check this: My iPod ran out of juice after the first three mile repeats. I went upstairs, recharged it so it would last another seven minutes, then WENT BACK DOWN and did my last one.
As hard as it was getting off the couch today, the feeling of “I ran four fast miles this morning, I can take on the world” is totally worth it. This all leaves me wondering why we spend so much time and energy resisting things that make us better, healthier and stronger.