When the body (or is it the mind) doesn’t fee like running

Monday, I was motivated, determined, excited to run. Then what happened? Less than 2 miles into a planned 3-mile run, I was ready to give up and go home. Trouble was, I was more than a mile from the car, so I had to get back there somehow. I ended up running 2.5 miles. I never felt as if I accomplished anything.

About a half-mile into the run, I started craving a cup of coffee. A few blocks from Foster Park, where I ran Monday, is a small coffee house. I could have run over there, gotten a cup of coffee and continued on, I suppose. But I wasn’t carrying cash.

coffee
I started craving coffee while out running Monday.

What did the coffee craving tell me? That was tired? That I had underslept? I suppose that could be it. After all, I worked until 1 a.m. Monday morning and then had to be up about 9 to get my son to a homeschool program at the library. I ran 10 kilometers (6.3 miles actually) Saturday as I train for the 20K race I’ve signed up for March 25. Maybe my body hadn’t recovered from Saturday’s run.

Saturday’s run went really well. I saw a beaver at the confluence of the three rivers (the St. Marys, St. Joseph and Maumee rivers) just below the water filtration plant. I tried to get a picture of the beaver but my not-so-smart smartphone gave an error message every time I pushed the shutter button, so no pictures of that magnificent animal.

I didn’t run Sunday, I did a bit of walking and rode my bike to work (less than 3 miles round trip). So why did I not feel like running? I don’t know.

A few weeks ago, I purposely ran with someone else for the first time in a long time. That run forced me to keep going even when something inside me said to stop. We met again the following week and ran in the snow. Last week, he couldn’t make it and this week I can’t join him.

I think having another person to keep your training honest helps. That is part of my motivation for writing this blog. Share with my legions of readers my running struggles in hopes that it keeps me honest in my training and I actually have a good year of training and some success running.

About that coffee. I’ve read in Runner’s World that the caffeine boost before a run boosts a runner’s speed. I like that. Trouble is, I have to pee — a lot — after drinking coffee. I’d rather keep running than looking for a spot to relieve myself when running. So, I generally don’t have coffee before I run.

starbucks
After an October race, I stopped at Cosmic Deer for an oatmeal and a cup of coffee.

But I will have a cup or two after a run. After I ran the Grand Tetons half marathon in June 2015, all I wanted to drink was coffee. The organizers had a coffee urn in the recovery area, and I kept going back for more and more coffee. It wasn’t necessarily good coffee, but I just kept drinking it. After I ran the Great Smoky Mountains half marathon in September 2016, my first stop on the way home (yes, I drove back to Fort Wayne from Townsend, Tennessee, right after the race) was a Starbucks across the road from the Knoxville, Tennessee, airport for a venti coffee and oatmeal.

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