Remember that time when you were craving sweets and reached into the snack drawer to break off off the corner of a cookie then walked away after a small nibble? Yeah, me either.
Yesterday I was craving a trail run. It was a little cold, but the sun finally came back, so around 3:00 in the afternoon, I laced them up.
In an effort to top my cookie with 2 inches of frosting, I decided to run with music for the first time in months. That was my first mistake.
It’s odd to think of running with music as a mistake. I mean, it’s music! Probably the best invention God has rolled out in a long time. But for some reason it always pumps me up just a little too much.
My rule for exercise is always “ease into everything.” But Eminem, AC/DC, and Grandmaster Flash rarely encourage you to chill.
After a few days of rain, the trails were a quagmire and the lyrics pumping my brain assured me this was a minor obstacle. I ripped into shin deep puddles with reckless abandoned. I was “Cleaning Out My Closet” on the “Highway to Hell.”
I’m not sure how much harder it is to run in mud, but by the time I realized I was 4.5 miles away from home I was a little beat up. I refilled my water bottle and contemplated the next move, and for me that’s typically, keep running.
I turned up the music and went about retracing my steps. Six miles was plenty, but after flying through a miniature lake at mile seven (and wrenching my ankle pretty good) I finally stopped at 8.
Still two miles from home I decided I should practice my Ironman-tempo-walk, and that’s what I did. There were a few attempts at running, but it hurt.
For some reason, running with music throws me off. It takes me away from my body, breath, and rational decisions. I pushes me like that 10th beer can give you confidence for the 11th.
My second mistake was running too far. When adrenaline is pumping, it’s easy to do.
But the fallout was exhaustion and frankly, that’s not my motivation. Last night was worthless and this morning wasn’t much better.
I guess the lesson here (and I have no idea how I keep forgetting this) is that moderation is the key to life (even when training for Ironman) and must be accepted. Just when running was becoming fun again, I fucked it up. Don’t let me do that again, no matter how many people would be impressed by a photo of my Garmin.