Saturday, April 01, 2006

The Body is a Cruel and Amazing Thing

Finally got to use my P.F. Chang's gift card from the Rock and Roll marathon (it expired 3/31) last night by bringing home takeout. Apparently my Beef a la Sichuan, "Twice-cooked with celery and carrots resulting in a crispy texture unlike anthing you are used to!" isn't agreeing with me. My last marathon owed me one more take-down, as I woke this morning with a very sick feeling in my stomach. It could be what Haiden had, but I'm blaming dinner. Perhaps the description should have added "...results in gastric agony unlike anything you are used to", but they'd proabably get fewer takers. Kiera stayed pretty much clear of the dish, especially the spicy sauce, and opted for the sweet and sour chicken.

Anyway, the last thing I wanted to do was run, but Scott was coming over for another attempt at his last tempo run before Boston. The order of the day was 10 miles, with 5 at 5:45 pace. I didn't want to let him down, so even though I had a pretty cold sweat going we headed out. The effort started with a lovely 2 slightly uphill miles with the wind directly in our faces. Immediately I was in the red zone, just trying to keep 5:48 pace or so. Scott and I took turns in the lead, but both of us were seriously suffering. We finally headed into mile three, which had a turnaround half-way through, and Scott backed off with a serious leg cramp. I ran on through the turnaround and slowed when I reached 3 miles of effort, which was ticked off at 5:53 average pace. Scott had stopped to stretch for a second, but ran back towards me at a good clip. I was really feeling like a bag of poo and hoping he would call it off, but he had started motoring. I tagged along, though after my one minute easy while waiting the body was really ready to quit. We pressed on, and Scott eventually gapped me by about ten yards. We were running solid 5:45 now, so I just hung on and maintained the gap. Finally we ran past our start line, and I ran enough extra to get an even 2 miles at 5:43. Scott wanted to make up for the ground he lost early and put in another 400 meters, which speaks to his tenacity.

When we finished, I was totally wiped out and could barely run at 8 minute pace for the last mile home. Once home, all I could do was lay on the floor. My stomach was still in agony and my head was now feeling thick. Try as I might, all I could get down was half a glass of powerade, which almost came back up.

No, I'm not done yet. 15 minutes to shower and dress, then off to work. I can barely keep my head from dropping to the desk, but I can't take any more time off right now. After about an hour, I walked across the street to the Starbucks for a pressed meat sandwich, bagel with cream cheese, and some juice and tea. I'm gingerly working my way through them now, but I'm not sure they will stay down.

Hopefully this is just a food thing, and I will still be able to salvage a long run tomorrow. The body is amazing. One minute I'm pounding out 5:43's, and only an hour later I'm shivering outside in the 65 degree weather, trying to walk across six lanes of traffic without falling on my ass.

Next week, come hell or highwater, no more tales of woe. I don't want to think about this past week, I'm just going to do what needs to be done and move on. I hope to have more time this weekend to dig into Lydiard's biography, and perhaps this blog will get back to training info and such.

Training: Today, 10 miles, 1:06:50, 6:47 pace, with 3 miles at 5:53 into the wind, one minute cruise, 2 miles with the wind at 5:43
Yesterday pm., 4 miles, 31:06, 7:47 pace


angie's pink fuzzy said...

Oh, Mike, how miserable!

I'm interested in hearing more about Lydiard...should be interesting!

tb1 said...

God bless you and your family Mike.

edinburghrunner said...

Ouch - sounds like you're having a tough day!

Thomas Sørensen said...

In a while you will tell others about this day with pride. You ran, you worked, you did not cave in. I wish I had your tenacity. And the Lydiard bio is good. I just finished it myself.

Thomas Sørensen said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Scooter said...

I don't think the Chang's people will appreciate your conclusion, and have a suspicion that "Nurse Mike" got infected. Of course, there is the possibility that even though the food is good, the demands on your body have made it so sensitive that the oil and spice just wouldn't metabolize. (Though the Bill Rodgers legend of pizza dipped in mayo would tend to debunk this theory...but your stomach isn't Rodgers'.)
Meantime, kudos for grinding it out.
Feel better!