So in preparation for the race, I cut off a bunch of my hair, making me more aerodynamic. I haven't tested it out but am expecting a huge increase in speed.
It may help balance out the fact that I'm sick. I have this awful hacking cough, dubbed Death Cough (big thanks to Amy for the title) for Cranky. It's keeping me up nights and it even had me in to see a doctor type person today out of desperation. If it doesn't leave me alone, I don't know how I'll fare in this race. Run run stumble hack? Just a guess. I went to CVS and bought just about everything that didn't put me on the Meth Maker lists so hopefully one of those things will come through for me. Nasal spray, organic honey homeopathic whatever, gummi candy with zinc in it? Yes, yes, and yes. And now I will go take it all.
Other than being annoyingly ill, taper week's not so bad. I ran 10 miles on Monday (it was supposed to be on Sunday, but Sunday got away from me) and huh. 10 miles is not so much in my repertoire. Nine? Nine, sure. Nine I can actually do. But 10? Oh, 10. You were rough. My route wasn't the best, but I was going for not getting lost so I made it all main-ish routes in a big loop.
I dropped the boys at school and immediately set my watch and took off from their parking lot, down into Lowell, over the Rourke Bridge and then along a long (long) stretch of 113. This part was nice. 113 is all Merrimack sparkling in the distance, horses grazing in rolling fields, and weird lawn decor that might come to life at night and kill you. Well, it was "nice." It was gorgeous out, I wasn't too tired yet, but I should mention that the wind was blowing hard and right at me and it was tough to keep heading in the right direction since the wind so clearly wanted me to turn around.
Finally, I cross back to my side of the river and start heading back toward the mothership. At this point, I start to flag. Badly. There's NO shoulder on this stretch of road and there are evil weeds, prickly ones, pushing out into the road and forcing me to choose between running through them and getting cut up or bumping out into the road and into unforgiving traffic. I choose the weeds and my exposed skin is still mad at me, but what did you want me to do, calves? Die?
Around 8.5, I'm hurting. I start picking points in the distance and making myself get to them, and then picking a new one as soon as I'm there. Over and over and over. I tell myself I can stop at 9.5, and then when I limp to 9.5, I make myself do the rest because I can't get so close to 10 and not finish. Plus I need to pick up the boys and if I walk, I run the risk of being late. So I don't.
Finally, my watch beeps out 10 and I stop running and walk. My legs immediately seize up and walking is painful, almost worse than running. I have about .7 miles until home and I limp them, stretch pathetically in the living room, call Andy and almost cry a little bit (in addition to being my husband, he's also my therapist AND exercise physiologist) and he makes me promise to drink some chocolate milk. I find a bottle of protein drink something or other that they handed out at the Falmouth Road Race check in and drink that, and feel sort of better. Better enough that I can shower and pick up the kids and semi-function in mom-role (eh -- I was below average all afternoon at that) and move on.
Anyway, it was not my easiest run. The wind against me for miles 3-7 probably didn't help matters, but here's hoping the half's a bit easier on me, or at least not worse. Ack! It's on Sunday!