Taper! But first, 13.4 miles of agony

It’s taper, taper time, taper, taper time.

Can you tell I’m excited? The Mayor Marathon half is this weekend, and my mom and sis are coming in from Penna. My sis and I are running together–yippeee!

Yesterday I ran my last long run. It was scheduled for Saturday but I fell unexpectedly sick, maybe something I ate? Whatever the case, I woke up Sunday feeling about 60 percent better and that sly running voice in my head said: “Listen, if you can run 12 miles while you’re half sick, you can easily run 13.1 when you’re well.”

So I ate my perfect before running meal (organic shredded wheat and a banana with peanut butter), tied on my shoes and, with my stomach sloshing and not feeling oh-so-very-well, I headed out to Exit Glacier Road.

Here’s a pic of the road. It’s paved, curvy and has continual inclines/declines.

Ron Niebrugge/photo credit

I’d like to say that it was a great run, that the scenery was awesome, that my legs felt loose and my pace flowed. But that didn’t happen. My legs were tight from my Mt. Marathon practice runs, and my stomach felt like lead The. Whole. Frigging. Time.

But the scenery was awesome, the mountains rising up like immense and solemn gods. I saw four eagles, a ptarmigan and tons of squirrels.

I planned on running 12 miles but messed up the markers and ended up doing 13.4.

The last four miles were dreadful. I wanted to quit. I wanted to sit down by the side of the road, take off my shoes and play with my toes. But I kept plodding along and recited this line from Richard Siken’s poem Scheherazade, over and over: “That means it’s noon, that means we’re inconsolable.”

I almost wept when  I ran up the driveway. I was home! I could take off my shoes! I could eat organic junk food and feel terribly pleased with myself.

Hope everyone else out there had better weekend runs. But the thing is, sometimes a bad run when you still keep pace is a good thing. It’s a great mental tactic. It reaffirms that you can fight through the pain and agony, that you can keep going. It makes you tougher. It makes you a stronger runner.

Running: 13.4, 1:59.14
Writing: Finished with Chapter Five. One more to go and I am. Done!
Reading: Here is Richard Siken’s poem. I love it so much. I want to meet him. I want to touch his hand or pat his balding head in hopes that the beauty of his words transfers over to me.

Richard Siken

Tell me about the dream where we pull the bodies out of the lake
                                               and dress them in warm clothes again.
        How it was late, and no one could sleep, the horses running
until they forgot they are horses.
          It’s not like a tree where the roots have to end somewhere,
    it’s more like a song on a policeman’s radio,
               how we rolled up the carpet so we would dance, and the days
were bright red, and every time we kissed there was another apple
                                                                     to slice into pieces.
Look at the light through the windowpane. That means it’s noon, that means
     We’re inconsolable.
                                 Tell me how all this, and love too, will ruin us.
These, our bodies, possessed by light.
                                                      Tell me we’ll never get used to it.

3 thoughts on “Taper! But first, 13.4 miles of agony

  1. ajh

    You are hard core! The 13.1 will seem like a piece of (organic) cake. I would have a hard time running well because I would be so distracted by the scenery.


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