This weather! It’s a bitch, isn’t it? After chilling out all spring we are suddenly in the horrible throes of summer. It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity. Wrong! It’s both!
I thought we would start adjusting to it by now but it still smacks me around every other day.
Sunday’s 9 miler, though shaded, was so freaking hot that I had to make my running buddies switch to intervals – and I could barely make it even at that!
Today’s run was to be a 6 mile tempo with two miles of warm up, 2 miles at 9:00-9:15 pace, and 2 miles cool down. The warm up went “okay”. I had mapped out a 1 mile out-and-back by my house so it was easy to break the whole workout into thirds. I left my water bottle at the start. I took things nice and easy.
Mile 1 – 11:40
Mile 2 – 11:07 (I was trying for a legit warm up, for a change)
Time to hit the tempo pace!
Mile 3 – 9:17. What the eff? I knew what my effort felt like and I was shocked by that number. I was sure I was 9:05, at the slowest.
I knew the return mile would be more difficult because it is a gradual up hill. I had planned on getting the first mile closer to 9 and then the second one closer to 9:15. I quickly realized that the second would be much slower than that.
So, I let the floodgate of negative self-talk fully release and I was mentally done. I ran for a hundred yards, stopped my watch, berated myself, adjusted something (everything was bothering me – my music, my flapping and squelching arm fat, my soaking wet glasses – yes, it was so humid, I kept soaking my glasses), and dug further into my hole. Finally, at mile 3.48 – I NEVER stop on an odd number like that! – I said, “screw this” and walked home with my tail between my legs. I didn’t even do a slow jog. I just walked.
Oh, when I got home, my coffee maker broke.
Needless to say, I was back to questioning all my life choices…
And then I read NYC Running Mama‘s post on heat acclimation . Very interesting! According to her charts, my pace should have been 9:15-9:30. In that case, my 9:17 was perfect and not even close to being worth my little hissy fit. Perspective, yo.
What does this mean? It means I need to suck it up and get it done and that my mental game sucks. Thankfully, this is something that I can fix. And, if a chart gives me mental “permission” to pull it back a bit or to not beat myself up, you can bet that bastard is going on the fridge today!
As for you? I’m giving you all “permission” to be kinder to yourself on these hot and horrible runs. Do you best but don’t load yourself down with unrealistic goals. Stay hydrated – maybe slip in your favorite frosty beverage a few times – and be patient.