Saturday, October 24, 2015

On the DNS

It happens. In early spring, you have every intention of making this the year you'll adequately prepare for a fall race and execute the race plan. The Universe throws you a few curve balls, but it's okay, you'll get back on track. Look, there's even a Groupon for a random race that sort of fits your training schedule for the peak race.

Then you catch a dreaded early fall cold and are knocked off your feet for days. And race day turns out to be chilly, and when you look at the course map, it's essentially laps around the parking lots of a defunct football stadium.

That's how my first DNS happened this morning. Going into the summer, I soon realized that my running base was nonexistent, which made a half marathon training plan with any sort of speedwork silly. New goal: build up mileage without injuring myself.

I was lured by a Groupon for a 15K a few weeks after the Army Ten Miler but before the Richmond half. I'd never run a 15K before. Why not?

When I went to bed last night, I still had every intention of racing this morning, even though I was on Day 10 of a lingering cold and had celebrated a friend's birthday with an 8-mile hike and multi-course dinner the night before.

Then my alarm went off at the reasonable time of 7am. Instead of bounding out like I usually do on race day, I rolled over and hit snooze. When the soothing tones of NPR woke me up again, I made the decision that my body was not well enough to race.

I slept for another 1.5 hours, pretty much proof that I was too exhausted to race. I did make it out for an 11-mile run later in the day. Suffice to say, my cold and tired legs showed.

I don't feel great about not making it to the start line this morning, but there's no doubt it was the right call. Plus, I got this view yesterday: