I have been training for several months now for this challenge. I really thought the training regimen would get easier as the days and weeks rolled by. Unfortunately, this is not the case. I am fully convinced the training is tougher and is chewing me up and spitting me out every day. I am miserable every morning while training. I have to fight myself every day to keep moving. My legs ache. My arms are sore. I hurt.
I have incorporated a long run on the weekend into my training routine. This past weekend was a 5 mile run on the levee next to my good friend the Mississippi river. Sunday morning 5:30am standing on the levee feeling tired and hot, I was already sweating and my legs felt like concrete blocks. As the run began I knew it was going to be a long day. I could never seem to find a rhythm. Every step felt like work. It was almost like I had to force each muscle to do what should be natural. About 4 miles in, I started to loosen up and find a rhythm (better late than never I suppose) and was able to increase my pace and finish strong. Tim was running next to me the whole way and I’m sure he was ready to push me off the levee as I continued to talk of the oppressive heat and humidity during the entire run.
Speaking of oppressive heat and humidity, let me try to describe what it feels like to train outdoors in south Louisiana during the summer. Sweat begins to build on my face and arms immediately when I open the front door and leave my house. As the 35 minute run comes to an end, my shirt is almost completely soaked and my shorts are beginning to dampen as well. After the first few exercises of the circuit is when the sweating passes the ridiculous phase and enters something terribly different. For all you Spaceball fans this type of sweating would be called the ludicrous phase. There is no doubt in my mind that I would not be as wet if I jumped into a pool. Sometimes I think if I had gills as well as lungs I would be better off as the air is so thick with humidity.
As I write this, a smile comes to my face and I think back to when I started this journey. I was unable to run a few blocks and I certainly would have collapsed in the heat. I had aches and pains but not the good type of aches and pains from pushing yourself. I feel better. I feel stronger. This is the best misery I have ever endured and I love every minute of it.