Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Procrastination Doctrine

For whatever reason, I insist on making things hard for myself by waiting till the last minute to do things.  When I was in school, I waited till after 10 (or midnight) to my homework.  Studying for exams could not happen until I finshed cleaning my apartment.  I never do laundry till I need my lucky shirt the following morning.  Christmas presents should always be purchased on Christmas Eve.  Go to sleep early?  Sleep is for the dead, and I have hours of gaming to roll through!  A marathon in 2 months?  Well I don't have to do a real long run until 3 weeks out, right?  That's completely fine...Sure it is...If you're a delusional asshat.  And that would be me.  I claim this title honestly and rightly.  When they make the call for delusional asshats, I'm ALWAYS at the front of the line.  If I wasn't a delusional asshat, I would have realized that I'm NOT 7 feet tall, NOT bulletproof, and NOT as fast as Hermes himself.  But these things do not occur to me, because...well...I'm me.

So true to form, I did my first long run over 13 miles today with the Nashville Striders.  It was a 20 mile run along the Country Music Marathon half-marathon course with an additional 7 miles of punishment fun thrown in.  Now every training guide in the world says that I shouldn't have done what I did today, but I needed to know how bad April 30 (the Marathon) would be.  After all, if I couldn't do a 20 miler at an easy pace, then there would be no way that I could finish the CMM in any reasonable time (as my lovely wife reminds me, what I consider reasonable and what every other person on the planet considers reasonable are two totally different things). 

I even tried prepping for the run the night before by drinking lots of fluids and laying out all my gear.  I'm not sure why I even bother sometimes.  True to form, I woke up late, wolfed down my breakfast and left half my gear at home (my GPS watch, my wallet, my GU).  Luckily for me I had a spare watch in my gym bag in my car, so I strapped it on hurriedly as I got to the park just as the Striders were starting to leave.  I grabbed some Vanilla Bean GU and took off. 

I learned two things today:  First, I can stomach, and actually like Vanilla Bean GU.  I usually go for berry/citrus flavored drinks, gels, etc., but vanilla bean wasn't too bad.  Second, I learned that I'm in better shape than I thought.  I managed the run at a slow and easy pace mostly around 8:50-9:00/mi for the first 13 miles with the random 8:30 and 9:41 thrown in for good measure.  Then for the last 7 miles, I tried to hit race pace an managed to keep most of miles at right under 8:30/mi.  Other than the usual soreness and exhaustion that comes from running 20 miles, I feel pretty decent.  Luckily for me, I have to spend all day in court tomorrow, so I have to take a rest day and recover.  We'll see how quickly I recover by Tuesday before I make any predictions about the marathon in a few weeks. 

Some might say that I would have had a better run if I had gotten more sleep and made sure that I was more organized in the morning, but that hardly seems like something I would do.

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