This past Saturday was to be THE run. The run that I've been training for since January. The run that has been the catalyst for me loosing 13 pounds. The run that I've commented on a few times on this blog. The run that has well & truly sucked a good portion of my free time the past 3 months.
The run that I couldn't complete because my knees would let me.
Two weeks ago, I ran 28.8k. Well technically, I ran 27k and hobbled 1.8k. My knees simply said f-you. We're done. The mind was willing, as was the body from the knees up. But the knees themselves weren't so willing! That really made me nervous, so I tried to take the next two weeks easy-fewer runs, shorter distances, lots o' anti-inflammatory drugs. The whole lot.
So, when this past Saturday came, I knew there was a pretty good chance that my knees would say f-you again. But, I had a plan: If I can at least make it to the 30k mark, I'll hobble the last 12k even if it takes me until the gym closes (effectively meaning it would take me 8 hours to complete THE run-2.5 hours longer than my target time). Alas, my knees first started protesting at the 7k mark, and by the 14k mark when I took my first break, I knew I was in trouble. I didn't know what to do, and perhaps more importantly than completing the run in any level of respectable time, I was concerned that continuing would cause damage.
At the 21k mark I threw in the proverbial towel. Intellectually, I know it was the right thing to do. Emotionally, I'm still feeling grumpy about it-and though 21k is nothing to sniff at, it's still only half of what I set out to do. Training had gone so well for me for the past 3 months-I was genuinely surprised at how well my body seemed to respond to the effort, and as the weeks passed, I felt more and more confident at what I was trying to accomplish. The longer runs were hard, but I really enjoyed them-and past a point was truly looking forward to THE run. And on some level, more importantly, I was looking forward to enjoying the feeling of completing such a daunting task.
Sigh. Well, there's always next year.