My journey to a healthier me

Tales of my life

Lessons learned from today’s run

on June 3, 2015

So today is the National Day of Running.

I couldn’t participate last year because I was still recovering from the car accident.

But I was definitely going to run this year!

Today also happens to be Camp Day at Tim Horton’s.  All proceeds from coffee sales today goes to send kids to camp.  I love that.  And since I also love coffee, it seemed perfect to combine the two.

I decided to make today’s run my long run of the week.  Normally, when I run, I loop around so I end at or near my house.  That really helps with a longish run, because I’m usually pretty tired by the time I finish.  But because I was planning on stopping for coffee, I decided to throw myself out of my comfort zone.

The problem was I didn’t plan it very well.

But I learned several lessons in the process.

Here’s how it went down:

I had my breakfast and coffee, as I always do.  Then showered and put my running clothes on.  It was a beautiful day, so I opted for a bright green tank top.  Most of the time, I don’t like tank tops, but this one I love.  Anyway, after getting dressed, I sprayed on sunscreen and applied some to my face.  Then I dug out money, found my asthma inhaler, put on my sunglasses and running hat, and grabbed my house key and phone.

I headed out the door feeling good about my run.  And excited that I was trying something a little different.

I decided to run to the farthest Tim Horton’s from my house.  And I decided to take a long way around to it.  I figured I would hit about 7km by the time I got there.  Usually, I map out my runs beforehand so I know the distance, but for whatever reason I didn’t do that this time.

I realize that 7km may not seem like a lot to many people, but I’m still fairly new to running so it’s a good run for me.  And plus, I would need to get back home, so that would make it even longer.

The first 3km felt pretty good. I had to stop a couple of times for traffic, but that’s okay.  I finally got to the path along the river so I wouldn’t have to worry about traffic for a while.  I did feel myself slowing down a bit, getting a little tired, but I kept moving.

The first big problem I encountered was when I got to the park.  Much of the park has gravel paths and they are a bit hard for me to run on.  Eventually I got to where the paths are paved.  But I could feel myself getting rather fatigued.  I was walking a little more often, but I kept moving.

I made it through the park, which I knew meant I had about 1km left before I was at my destination.  I was really slowing down at this point, but just kept going.

I had to stop for traffic a couple more times.  One car ran a red light, and if I had not been paying attention or if I’d been moving a little faster, I would have been hit.

I finally made it to the Tim Horton’s and I had never been so happy to stop.  7.14km according to my Nike training app.  I was tired and a little sore.  I was also very thirsty and starving!

I had enough money for a coffee and a small sandwich, and both disappeared quickly.  Too quickly, actually.

It was a bit of struggle to get there, and as I sat there resting up a bit, I wondered how I was going to make it home.  I hadn’t really thought about that before I left my house.

So after resting a bit, and using the bathroom, I headed for home.  I was exhausted and a little shaky.  But I didn’t have any choice.  I opted to just walk home instead of trying to run more.  And I decided to take a more direct route, but staying in well travelled area in case I needed help.

After what seemed like forever, I made it home.  Even more tired and still hungry.  I ate, and drank some coconut water and a gatorade.  Then I took a shower and laid down to rest.  I woke up a couple of hours later very sore, still feeling tired, and still hungry.  And I noticed after waking up from my nap that I didn’t quite spray on enough sunscreen.

I didn’t do much the rest of the day.  And I plan on going to bed early tonight.

So this is what I learned:

1) Take something to drink. You KNOW you will need it.

2) Take something to eat. Gels, chews, energy bars/bites, whatever.  Just take something.  Again, you KNOW you will need it.

3) Make sure you are wearing enough sunscreen.

4) Make sure you have enough money to take the bus home if need be.  You never know what could happen.

5) Take your phone charger if possible, at least until you get the issue with your phone battery fixed.  And maybe even still then.  If something happens, you may need to call someone for help.

All VERY important lessons.

I just wish I hadn’t had to learn them all in one day.

It wasn’t all bad.  I did do a few things right.

1) I made sure I had my inhaler.

2) I stayed in well travelled areas.

3) I did stop and rest.

4) I put on sunscreen (although not enough).

5) I wore a hat and sunglasses.

6) I did have my phone with me (although it was nearly dead by the time I got home).

All in all, it was a good run/walk.

7.14km out and 5km back.  More than I’ve ever done in one day before.

A good way to celebrate National Running Day.



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