Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Right Way and the Wrong Way

Cause I love y'all, I'm compelled to share my reflections on the right and wrong way to do a long run. According to me...


Plan ahead. Like the night before. Pack a bag with all the necessary implements -- clothing (big plus), shoes, Garmin, HR strap, socks...blah, blah, blah.


Forget your water bottle. You know, the one that holds your fluids that you will need while running through the heat. Oh, and the one that has a place for your keys.


Be flexible. Instead of running from the office, zip home right after work and plan on a quick change and hitting the road.


Make it home and get immediately sucked into email.


Plan ahead (sense a theme?). Bring your running bag home.


Leave the entire bag at the office, sitting quietly waiting for you on the couch. Realize this and scope the huge pile of laundry in "your" room and realize that you only have an overly tight pair of compression shorts and a snug top to wear on the run. And you're bloated. Grab the cleanest jog bra you can find in the aforementioned laundry pile and hope you don't offend other runners. Because your Body Glide is at the office, make do with the Butt'butter lotion you have for cycling. Same idea, right? Try to not look at yourself in the mirror before heading out.


Take care of your feet. Wear supportive shoes.


Since your current pair of running shoes is sitting on the couch in your office, grab the next best thing: the Asics you retired months ago after 100s of miles of training in them. Ignore the "X" sharpied in the heel of each one, your attempt to insure that you don't wear them for running again.


Plan ahead. Again. Pick a course that allows you to either double back for more fluids and calories or bring enough for the whole trip.


Intend to do the loop route, but whimsically take the long road through the trail system, leading you miles and miles away from water, accelerade, peanut butter sannys, and civilization.


Be aware of the time. Bring reflective gear if you will be running in the dark and chose a route close to home for safety. Consider bringing your mace.


Choose a new running path on the trail system and run until it's almost dark. Then turn around. Play a game with yourself when it turns pitch black and you can no longer see your feet. The game is: managing your energy so you can sprint at any moment away from a psychopathic killer lurking on the trail in the dark. Name the game Fear Intervals. Wonder why you're the only one out there playing the game.


Coordinate a panic time with your significant other. Let them know your route and when to worry if you do not return. Bring your cell phone in case of an emergency or change of plan.


Just tell your significant other that tonight will be a "long one." Fail to mention that you'll be exploring new trails (because you, yourself, have yet to decide that!). Make sure you plug your phone into the power cord at home before you leave, so it's nice and juiced up for the next time you need to call out for sushi.


These are just some tips from my last long run. It was fun. Can you tell?

Since I've managed to do it the WRONG WAY for everyone, feel free to make the RIGHT decisions next time you're headed out. I'm just sayin'.


Anonymous said...

Such a nice list of right and wrong. Just when we think we know what we are doing, we go and forget.

Laurie said...

Ha! I'm glad you survived even after doing everything wrong.

greyhound said...

I had a laugh at your expense. As Coach Wooden would say, "no one plans to fail; they just fail to plan."

LBTEPA said...

Oh no!
Oh no!
Glad you're ok - and applause for still going out even though you'd forgotten your stuff and had to wear an unflattering outfit!

Unknown said...

SOunds all too familiar

JenC said...

Well, you made it through and the perseverance builds character. I bet you have all your ducks in a row next time! : )

Steve Stenzel said...

yeah, it SOUNDS like a blast!...

The advice about letting your significant other know your route is an important one!

Tea said...


Kim said... make me laugh.

Comm's said...

word of advice from one who knows your story all too well, pack a bag of all your extra 'good stuff' and keep in your car. Add a set of goggles, two towels and vaseline in a ziplock bag. Extra set of cheap cycling gloves and gas station sunglasses too.

Duane said...

That was funny! Glad you're okay!

Jane said...

pretty funny...ain't neurosis great?

Iron Pol said...

Able, saw your comment on raceAthlete about special needs bags. From what I've heard, they are a coin toss. You might get the stuff back, you might not. Personally, I'm going with items that I might need, but won't worry about losing.

A long sleeve shirt, but not my favorite one. Just one that is acceptable and has been through some training runs. Tubes and CO2. Food I know I'll eat. Etc.

That way, if I need something, it's there. If I lose it, it's not my "favorite" stuff.

Anonymous said...

This is just hysterical. Of course, things like this are always funny in hindsight provided nothing bad happened during them.

Andria said...

Fear Intervals! I run those all the time, except mine is running from dogs not the crazy person lurking on the side of the road! Haha!