It's was supposed to be a 16-mile run. It was supposed to be difficult but rewarding. I was ready. I had spent all day hydrating and stretching and was excited to crush it. The run was going to take place the morning after my 28th birthday. I specifically planned my birthday dinner to be the correct mixture of carbs and protein.
So when I found myself later that night riding the porcelain bus, needless to say, it wasn't part of the plan.
I woke up (on time) hoping it was just a bug, but was disappointed to find myself somehow feeling worse. I texted my run buddy that I was bowing out and fell back asleep, hoping to wake up ready to run 16 miles.
I did wake up, slightly less sick but infinitely more determine. I laced up, Vaselined up, and filled my Camelback with sweet ice water and set out. I decided to run around my neighborhood instead of heading into town like I normally do. There's a route that is 8 miles with a few hills and some great mountain views. I planned on doing two laps.
Keyword there is planned.
I got down my street...and seemed to run out of gas. I started running again, only to start walking a short time later. I couldn't get a good rhythm. I fought off waves of nausea. My playlists didn't motivate me. I was tired and I felt crummy.
Emma called me during her mile 15 and my mile 5. She sounded so strong while all I wanted to do was cry. I was so slow and I didn't know how I was going to make it. My stomach wasn't happy and my right calve was not happy about me running. She gently reminded me that running after food poisoning was a huge accomplishment and to not push it with an angry calf.
"You look so strong!" she told me. I replied that it was impossible for her to know what I looked like.
"Well, you sound strong."
I guess I was. I should have probably not even left the house or gotten out of bed. This wasn't going to be the run I wanted, but it was the run that I fought for. every single mile was a victory.
I painfully and slowly made it through miles 6 and 7. At 7 and a half I started dry heaving At mile 7.75 I started walking. As I stepped on the porch, I met my husband who met me with some water.
"I didn't make it 16 miles," I said, defeated.
He smiled. "8 is close enough."