Two terrible, no good, very bad workouts

I am obviously over-exaggerating, but I can't help but reference a great children's book! It's the children's librarian in me (high school job - LOVED it!) :)


Exaggerating or not, Monday and Tuesday were given to me to challenge my resolve.

Monday I met up with Brian at Anytime Fitness to do a 9 mile moderate run. I HATE the treadmill and run poorly on it, but because it was something like -20 degrees out (air temp), I decided to suck it up and get on the 'mill.

I decided that since it was a HR specific workout, I'd try a hill program on the TM and just keep my HR in the prescribed zone.

All was well until about 3.5 miles. I don't know if it was the hills or what, but I had to stop & pretend like I had to use the bathroom. Really, I stopped because my hamstrings were screaming at me and I was using WAY too much effort for the paces I was hitting. I used my bathroom break to "reset" my hip (as per my PT's recommendation, when thing start going south!) and just to stretch in general.

I told myself: it's not that bad, Nichole, keep at it! Except, it was. At 5 miles I slowed to 10:00 MILES and was still keeping my HR in the "moderate" zone - I remember looking down and seeing 173. For 10:00 miles? ARRRGHHHH. What?

I was also having to grab the bar to make sure I wasn't going to trip. Wow.


I remember looking over at the girl next to me. For the first time in a while, I envied how easily she ran. Her stride wasn't forced, she wasn't straining - and she was running 8:00 miles. Ohh, to feel that effortless again!

I stopped the treadmill, tried to explain my symptoms to Brian, and then moved over to the good ol' elliptical machine. The pride took a hit there :).

Tuesday was similar. I lasted just 3.5 miles with a lot of stretching breaks. What is going on here? A ton of negative feelings flooded back, recalling the struggle and strain of all of my runs this fall. I know the journey back will have ups and downs, but I just wasn't prepared to feel this awful straining feeling again. *Sigh*

I let myself dwell on these workouts too much. Sorry to Nate and Craig who had to hear about the workouts that evening.

As I went to bed Tuesday evening, feeling out of shape (soft, even! I've gained weight and know it hasn't been muscle mass), still broken, etc, I reminded myself that I can choose how I respond to my situation. Be "negative Nancy" or be "relentlessly positive Nichole". And yes, SO cheesy, but hey, whatever works.

When's the last time you had a Cheeto? :) And isn't that a weird name? Cheeto... hmm...
I have to remember that last week was a really good week! I did an 11 mile progression run and a 13 mile long run (and a 36sec 200m! ha) that all went well.

I can't change where I'm at, and coming back from being this over-trained/over-raced (or whatever the heck this is) will take a long time. It will come. In the meantime, I can pour myself into trusting Chris and doing workouts as written, even if they're on the elliptical. I'm the queen of getting fit/staying fit on that machine! (And do actually like it, have to admit) I can take my strength sessions more seriously and really work on flexibility. I can start to eat like an athlete again (i.e.defined meals with good ratios, timed snacks, etc) vs. just eating when hungry and not paying attention to quantities.

 
I also read Ariana's latest blog post (here) and something in it resonated with me. I actually am inspired to make some sort of motivation board (I don't think I've ever said that in my life)! It's also motivating to see that she has come back from a big injury and is now running really well, but also still focusing on the little things she needs to become stronger.

Apologies to bring you along through this bumpy up and down period, but I always feel better after blogging :). Thanks for listening! Now, off to my strength session for the day! Should be fun!

Nichole Porath

Nichole is a blogger, elite level runner, and coach. She ran professionally for Brooks for two years after qualifying for the 2012 US Olympic Marathon Trials. During that time she founded TNC endurance, where she coaches and motivationally speaks to organizations large and small. This blog details her rise to national-level racing, and continues to follow her as she gets back into racing after starting a family. Read on, friends!

8 comments:

  1. Thank you for letting us join you on the journey. For me, I find it reassuring that you are human too! :) Remember, the bumps make you slow down so you can get stronger; mentally, physically, emotionally. It takes strength in all areas to be a strong athlete!

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    1. Yep - what doesn't kill you makes you stronger! It also makes you appreciate the good days :)

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  2. I used to love cheetos, but not the crunchy kind, the puffy kind :) Anyway, I loved this post (not that you had a couple crummy workouts), but that I can totally relate right now - as you know :). We're all in this together, and it's helpful knowing other people go through the exact same things. Its easy to feel alone and its encouraging to remember that I'm not. I know big things are going to happen for you, and I'm excited to follow your journey!

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    1. Ohh, the puffy kind! Glad you can relate - and hopefully we'll both be working out of it together!! :)

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  3. Nichole keep positive! We all have bad workouts! The hey is to sweep it under the rug and go on yo the next one!

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    1. Thanks Terry! Those workouts have been swept under the rug, to be forgotten about! As Willie said, two positives for every negative.

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  4. Ditto to what bandychick6 said - I really appreciate your honesty. Coming back from overtraining/injury is never an easy road and is definitely filled with some physical (and mental!) setbacks. But you have the best attitude in staying positive and also in listening to and respecting your body. Like you said, you had some awesome workouts last week - and plus, if you didn't have these bad ones, you'd never appreciate the great ones, right? :) P.S. - I read that book (Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day) to my 3 year old almost nightly! She (and I) love it. Here's to better days and workouts!

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    1. Thanks for the comment :). Appreciate that you appreciate the honesty.... and yes, workouts/weeks like this make you appreciate the good days/good weeks SOO much :). I'll come around, it just may take a while! PS - That's awesome! Any other favorites?

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