Mini Me

Alternative Title:  Three Reasons Why I Did Not Run the Mini 10K

I skipped a race yesterday.

It isn’t the first time that I have done that.  The last time was a four-miler in the fall when I had the flu.

But this time around the decision felt less forced.  It was simple, really.

There were three distinct reasons why I chose to stay in bed on Saturday morning.

3.  I wasn’t really that committed to running this race.

I ran the 2012 Mini 10K last year.  It was a crowded course.  The start was sort of a schlep from my apartment and was set for a rather early time.  I was disappointed with my time.

But I really wanted to give this race another shot.  I wanted to experience it for what it seems to me it is supposed to be — a race for women to run together.

So this year, I had planned to run this race with a friend.  But a reasonable way through my training cycle, it became pretty clear that she wasn’t training, and that I would be running this race alone.

While I am a huge advocate of doing things you enjoy, even if you do them by yourself; I really wanted the experience of running a race for fun, with a friend.  Maybe it’s all of the pictures I see on other blogs of happy friends on race courses, smiling and running together.  And I so want that experience!  That experience of not freaking out about my time, calculating my finish from the start…but just running happily, alongside a friend.

When it was clear that she was bailing, I just mentally checked out of this race.

2.  I needed a break.

I went from a hardcore half marathon training cycle right in to training for this race.

I barely took any time to rest and headed out for a time trial 10K less than three weeks later.  I ran that race extremely well and am thrilled with the PR it yielded.  Yes, I want to get back out there, but maybe this was just too soon.

I chose a too-hard training plan that left me feeling burnt out with weeks to spare before race day.

Maybe if I had trained less seriously, if I just ran a bit more casually, a bit more conservatively, I would have eased through this training cycle and ran a great race.

But that isn’t what I did.

I sort of beat myself up.  And I’m tired.

A couple of weeks ago, I started to take stock.  What was more important — PRing in a 10K that I wasn’t that invested in, or beginning marathon training with a well-rested mind and body?  So it should come as no surprise that I chose the latter.

I scaled back my training significantly – down to just one or two runs per week – and lifted and did barre exercises on other days.

In other words, by the time the Mini 10K rolled around, I probably wasn’t in the best shape to run it.  But I was actually okay with that.

1.  I was in pain.

The number one reason to skip a run.

I was in so. much. pain.

I have no idea why.  It sort of came on out of nowhere.

My legs had been pretty sore from the move; from constantly lifting heavy items and carrying them up and down on a step-ladder.  Imagine spending all day, every day for three days doing squats and lunges with heavy weights.  That was basically how I spent Memorial Day Weekend.

The soreness subsided within a few days, but came back with a vengeance on Thursday.

Maybe it was payback from my legs for forcing them to carry me around the office and work functions day-and-night in stilettos.  Maybe I ran Thursday morning’s run too hard after running casually in the weeks before.  Maybe I was dehydrated, deficient in some nutrient, tired…or maybe it was just cramps.  I don’t know.

But my legs hurt right up and down, hip to ankle.

So I sat out this race.  This race that I was only sort-of excited about, that I just barely trained for and was in too much pain to run.

And the truth is, that I really don’t feel like I missed out on anything.  If anything, I feel that I have given myself the promise of starting out a new training cycle, well rested and well prepared to face the challenge.

Run On™

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