🇬🇧 ENG Lessons from the worst run

🇬🇧 ENG Lessons from the worst run

Because that’s what the good life is all about, that one learns from mistakes.
Preferably the delicious ones, as Diana advised Bunko*.
So I will reveal some infamous cards from those old decks of my running life.

Unisław June 30, 2012.

Summer, half marathon. A fairly easy route, but with a solid run up at the end.
Revenge of the mother-in-law is one of its colloquial names.

I drove to Unislaw having listened to scary stories about the run-up starting in the middle of the 19th kilometer.
Friends used to scare it the way you scare small children with an evil witch, or unfaithful husbands with a mother-in-law's revenge

A quote from the blog of a fellow runner, there also a photo of the last section of this hill.

And I was in shape. At least I thought I was.
Four weeks earlier I had made a personal best at this distance in Bytów.
On top of that, I am at ease with the heat. I could handle it, even very well.

So, I thought „I will do a lifetime best on this route”.

Previous competitions have shown that the form is there. I also ran competitions in the heat.
For example, the Papermaker’s Run, the half marathon in Puck, etc.

We came to Unislaw with my team from BiegamyRazem. It was hot and muggy.
It gave me nothing to think about. After all, I am a strong runner.
My head was then not clouded by the thought that maybe the weather conditions could be taken into account.
No way! Run without thinking!

The first few kilometers were nimble. First I ran with the runners, then gradually accelerated. Because it was too slow!
I have a photo of me overtaking the runners. In those initial hot kilometers. This is the title photo at the very top.
Ah, how it later took its revenge on me.

The first crisis came after max* 7-8 kilometers.

I was not yet halfway through the distance,
and I felt that something was wrong.
Very wrong. I’m short of breath. I lack strength. It’s out of compulsion that I slow down.
I’ll see how a slower pace works out and then I’ll pull harder.

Damn! What the hell! I slow down and nothing helps!
Because I can’t keep up the pace. Not a very fast pace anymore.
Now I’m trotting! I feel a decrease in strength, my legs are dragging.

But after all, personal best was supposed to be! I calm down and keep on trotting.
I see a long gentle downhill in front of me!

Oh here I will rest! Not very, because it is only gently downhill.
But I’ll take advantage of it and rest, I tell myself. I self-lacerate myself.
Autosuggestion. Placebo. No, I won’t rest, or at least not like this. Because I can’t keep up the pace!

I can’t keep the trot. I have to switch to walking, otherwise I won’t make it.
There is no halfway point in the run and Peter switches to walking. That’s as much as he can do.
This much he can afford. He must and can only walk.

So he walks. It’s not easy for offended pride. It is not easy to go either. I feel pumped up.
As if someone put a big stone on my chest and told me to breathe.
As if I had lowered a much too heavy barbell onto my chest and couldn’t lift it.

I am passed by friends. I am passed by runners who were overtaken earlier.
They were running, trotting and I was the drama. A limp legged remnant of a runner.

It’s so bad, I can’t believe it.

I see an ambulance in front of me. How I was tempted to go inside, hide in the shade and chill! Very much so!
I don’t know whether shame or shyness kept me from asking the men for water or the
opportunity to take a breather inside. No, I continued walking. Walk and that was it. Foot after foot (un)delicious Peter.

Several times I tried to run up. Really! It didn’t make it. It pacified me after a few seconds.
Okay, then I’m going. I will be polite. Peter’s going to Canossa.
Maybe he’ll climb up to the top, to his mother-in-law’s Revenge, maybe not.

But before that happens it’s a few more kilometers of flat. Meadows, fields, the road to Ostroleka.
And in the distance began to thunder.
A storm. That’s why there was this ghost.
Runners on the road, in the background trees and fieldIt’s those first kilometers and me who overtake! Hahaha, until then!

After 15* kilometers, maybe farther, I started to trot. So precautionary gently.
It went! The leg gave to the trot. Then I increased the speed. Tenderly and gently.
Because I could not afford another pacification.

Revenge of the mother-in-law

Fortunately, in the shade.
I don’t know whether in the shade of trees or clouds, probably both. However, I remember the trees.

I like uphill. I like to run uphill. Ba I like to make myself go uphill.
Sometimes unconsciously even, but about that another time. Though here you see an example of that, in this post.

That’s why you won’t be surprised that at that time I decided to get giddy and run up.
Although it was more on the principle of, eh I’ll climb at a slow pace
and see if and how much I can do.

And I did. At such a pace, however, it was not a march. It could be considered a run.

Soon there was a finish line. I ran into it with a time of 2.08. More than 6 minutes per km.
In Bytow I did a personal best of 1 h 37 minutes which gave a pace of 4.37 per kilometre!
Now it was a minute and a half per kilometre slower.
Well, you showed yourself Peter!

Now to the point. To the so-called meat.

What I could learn here if I analysed the run.

I didn’t think.

It’s strange, isn’t? Well, no. I was thinking about personal best. And that was all.
There was a lack of analysis as to whether there was a point in attacking my record.
Especially in a large accumulation of competitions, because I practically ran every week or two.
I didn’t think about the risk of not recovering from the last race.

I didn’t think „Peter, why did you want to run your personal best on such a hot day?”.
Maybe then I would have concluded that it was not worth it, that I was overtired after all.
That it’s better to save my strength for the next competition.

No. I just quickly and unreflectively made the decision.
I didn’t make any deep consideration.

Another mistake of the non-thinking kind was at the start. I could see how stuffy and hot it was. But where there!
There was a decision then we change nothing and do our job.

I did. A several-kilometer march.

Failure to adjust the pace of the run to the conditions.

Although I would have started more cautiously and then sped up. As long as it was possible.
But no. Let’s charge. Slow is slow, it will be faster.

If this not adjusting the pace to the conditions doesn’t appeal to you then return with your eyes and memory to this:
„I’m trotting down the road. It’s downhill and I’m slowing down! No no, I can’t even trot anymore. I’m marching … 🙁 „

In my running life I have made a few more runs that I would like to forget. On the other hand, these mistakes
would come anyway. Sooner or later. One should not be afraid of them. You have to think them over (yes!) and learn the right lessons.

Read here about running without pink (but with success) from Asia.

*this was 2012, and I’m writing this in 2023, I may be wrong, but rather only by 1-2 kilometers.
** I recommend this comic, worthy of attention in professional life (and not only).

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