Sometimes I hate running

According to the calendar, we should be stocking up on new jeans, wool sweaters, and Halloween candy. However, the weather in New York City has other plans in mind. When a 1 block walk to the subway at 7:30am leaves you perspiring, you know it’s going to be a hot one. 12 hours later is was still sticky, oppressively humid, and 90 degrees. Good times!

The workout on tap for tonight was pretty basic – 2 x 3 mile loops @ half-marathon pace with a 1 mile recovery jog in between. Compared to last week’s 2 x 4 mile with no recovery jog, it seemed like a piece of cake. Uhh, until I stepped out the door that is. My warm-up felt like someone stuck me on a treadmill inside an oven. 2.65 miles later I was drenched in sweat and half-blinded by the salt dripping into my eyes. And then the fun really began. For those of you familiar with Central Park, we began at W. 72nd Street, ran through the cut-off, up Cat Hill, through the 102nd Street transverse, and down the West Side finishing at W. 88th Street. From there we jogged back to W. 72nd Street and did it all over again. By the end of the first loop I wanted to cry (no, really, I’m not kidding). My arms felt tight, my legs felt like lead, and we were only half-way through. This was definitely one of those times when my mind started to drift towards negative thought territory. “It is so hot and humid – this is crazy!” “Why don’t you just stop?” “This workout sucks…you’re going too slow.” It took a lot of mental effort to push through that second lap. The results weren’t pretty (the second 3 mile loop was a good 35 seconds slower than the first), but I am going to give myself a pat on the back for not lying down in the grass with the raccoons and giving up.

Sometimes there are runs in brilliantly sunny, crisp 60 degree weather and you feel fabulous. Sometimes you PR. Sometimes running 10 miles feels like 2. But occasionally….running sucks and you hate it.  You check your watch every 10 seconds. Your knee hurts. You want to stop. When that happens the only solution is to get it done, go home, chug a Gatorade, and eat a cupcake. What is the point of this whine-y post? I guess I’m just trying to say that even if you love doing something, it’s not always going to be easy. Especially when it’s hot as balls out there.

Anyhoo, here are the stats for today’s workout:

  • 2.65 mile warm-up
  • 3 miles @ “half-marathon” pace – 21:44 (7:15 pace)
  • 1 mile recovery jog
  • 3 miles @ “half-marathon” pace – 22:20 (7:27 pace)
  • 3.35 mile cool-down
  • 13 miles total

I was feelin’ a little nauseated post-run (yay running?!), so I chugged a Gatorade, ate some leftover asian noodle stirfry, and then crawled into bed with two Tonnie’s minis cupcakes. Brian from Bridges, Burgers, and Beer had a dozen delivered to my office on Wednesday as a birthday surprise. Thanks dude! I tried to limit myself to two. I failed. A 3rd one definitely hopped into my mouth before bed.

Oh…and I also caved and bought a Garmin Forerunner 110. Well, technically I used birthday $$ from my Mom and Grandma, so it was a present. Happy Birthday to me! I’m still figuring it out, but I’m excited to know accurate mileage for long runs.

Likes – GPS enabled, super easy to charge and set up, not ginormous (it can pass for a regular sports watch).

Dislikes – it’s been taking a l-o-n-g time to catch the satellites. I’m not down with waiting.

Do you run with a Garmin? Nike +? Watch? Any tips for the rest of us?

  • Sveta

    Nike + for me. It’s cheap, and been going for over a year of heavy milage. I’ve been put of buying a Garmin because of its short battery life, and bad reviews on Amazon (FYI dont read them).

  • Kudos for working your way through a tough run! I’ve definitely had my share of those, where you’re just plain miserable. What always keeps me from caving when a run gets really hard is a quote I heard once that said something to the effect of “If you can’t give 100%, at least give 60%, because 60% is a lot better than 0%” So even if my workout didn’t turn out as great as I hoped, I remind myself that I still gave more than zero…and then I go eat something much like the cupcakes that you ate.

    Those look fantastic, by the way. 😀

  • wow, way to go on keeping up the run. I like heat and running in above 80 degrees is the best for me but there are some times if it’s really humid and hot and I have trouble breathing (asthma) that I get discouraged.

  • ida

    I have a garmin 305 and love it, but that 110 is really cute and looks so much less bulky than mine. Try and stand in as open of a space as possible when finding satellites, though that is probably hard in NYC.

  • Those cupcakes look good! But I feel your pain with the run…great job on conquering it! One stop close to the marathon 🙂

  • Christina

    I’ve never lived/run in a city as big as NYC but in Houston when I would race downtown my Garmin 405 (huge watch!) really struggled to keep up with the satelites when we ran through the downtown streets with all the tall buildings around. It would tell me things like 4min/mile pace (not at all my real pace) or it would take a long time to locate the satelites as I was starting my run. My trick was to stand still in one spot, in as open an area as possible, and give it a chance to locate the satelites . . .if I start running before it hooks up to them it seems to take even longer and I get frustrated and stop anyways. Good luck I know you’ll love the Garmin once you give it a chance!

  • You need to buy a book by John L. Parker Jr called “Heart Monitor Training for the Compleat Idiot.” It’s excellent and helped me make sense of my new Garmin 310XT and what I should be doing with it…

  • Allie

    i live in a city and it does take a while to lock in a signal. what helps me is i turn it on a good 15 min before i am out the door and leave it by my window, altho that doesn’t always work. i found when i was in NYC recently, i could not lock in at all in the place i was staying midtown, but once i got to the park if i stood still for a little while i could find a signal.

  • Erika

    I have the same watch and love it! It doesn’t find satellites quicky in NYC because of all the buildings, but standing in an intersection or waiting until you get to a clearing can help. Definitely check out the USB connector and maps/pace charts online too post-run. Maybe it just appeals to my nerdy side, but I think its pretty cool 🙂 Have fun!

  • I hate bad runs! Its so easy to bast yourself up about therm. Bah. Well done for powering through! Not every run can be epic, right?!

  • Word, woman, word. There are some workouts where you seriously question why on earth you are doing this to yourself, why you pursue running as a hobby, why you put in all the hard work if it’s just going to suck. Been there, grumped about that, FEEL YOU. It’s normal. I have hated running and thrown my shoes across the room and sulked many a time. Still, I think you should be enormously proud about sticking with it, even through the craptastical weather.

    That said…we runnin’ tomorrow?! It’s supposed to be brilliant and Earl will hopefully have passed.

    I think you know how I feel about my Garmin.

  • Boo for crappy runs, but you’re awesome for sticking it out! I am pretty weather sensitive (read: lazy) and woulda given up on the whole move fast initiative. Aaand that’s why I’ll never be an awesome runner! Meh.

    I’m all about the Nike plus sportband. It’s cheap. It’s easy. What more could one ask for in life?!

  • i dont run with any type of garmin or gps. i really want to but i don’t want to turn into any more of a numbers junkie!

  • I might be the last person on Earth who still uses a Garmin 201 (oldest one with a rechargeable battery). It’s still better than a plain old stopwatch, but the next purchase will most likely be an upgrade to something that reports more consistently on the length of runs I do all the time.

    Don’t feel bad about your workout. Training for marathons and halfs in the summer is murder. Look at it this way: if the marathon is in the fall, all the hard work you’re doing now, while it’s hot and uncomfortable, will have given you a really good base for the last few weeks, when it cools down and it’s that much easier to train. Your taper runs will probably be faster and easier, too.

  • Kristen

    Ugh! I ran in NYC last night too and was hoping as it got darker it would get cooler. Definitely not the case…

    To answer the question – I think I may be one of the only long distance runners I know who does not wear a watch or a garmin! Maybe because its my only time away from electronics?? who knows. Hopefully this weekend will cool down!

  • Jess

    Um, I run with a walkman. Not kidding. Apparently I am the last runner on the earth to not own an ipod. I think I’m the last person actually.

  • Laura

    I love my Garmin! I am not a numbers-obsessed person by any means, but it makes me feel better to have it on my wrist. Is this your first time using a GPS-enabled watch?! I don’t know why, but that shocks me!
    I leave my Garmin on the windowsill to find a satellite before setting out for a run. When I do this, it takes literally 30 seconds to connect! I think that’s because of the location of my apt. When I’m in other places, I turn it on and put it down somewhere while I stretch. Always works!
    Those cupcakes look delish!

  • I hear you on the heat my friend. Nothing sucks the fun out of running more than a wicked hot day. I have a Garmin 305, which I LOVE but I’m so jealous of how small yours is!

  • I have a Garmin 405 and I love it. Yes, it’s a beast, but that just makes me feel that much more badass! 🙂 Sometimes it does take some time to find satelites, but it gives me time to stretch — something I blow off too much. Or, I set up my workout before heading for the door so that by the time I’m ready to go, my Garmin is ready and waiting.

  • I just ran my first run with a Garmin today. Borrowing a friends 305. It is so bulky, but does feel kinda badass. It took a while to find satellite and lost it once.

    I needed to read your post about hating running, because today it was so hot that I wanted to find a new hobby! I just need cooler weather.

  • alex

    hey! with the garmin if you are trying to get a faster satellite signal, try not wearing it while you are aquiring a signal and place it near a window. for some reason if you are wearing if while looking for a signal it goes WAYYY slower. aka- do not be standing on a start line of a race trying to get signal bc that is not a fun experience! good luck! sometimes the tough run posts can be encouraging, thanks for being honest!

  • That’s awesome that you stuck it out-just think that you’ll never see that kind of weather at 7-8pm again for a loooong time! Unless you plan on running in Arizona next week…what are your running plans during your road trip?

    I’ve never owned a garmin nor have I owned any flavor of an mp3 player! (So Jess and Kristen, you’re not the only ones!)

  • I have the Garmin 405 and LOVE it!! The satiellites don’t take very long. The best way to get them is where there aren’t any trees or tall buildings (I can image that being dificult in NY). Enjoy! P.S…the minis look so good!!

  • Alisha

    hey! Just read your post about the Garmin. I use mine all the time for running and biking. I have one as well-not sure of the number but here is what I have determined. Stick it outside and lay it on the ground in an open space while you are finishing getting ready (putting on shoes, socks, ect.) It should find the satelite and you should be good to go!

  • I have a Nike+ and I love it- it does need to be callibrated as I am short so have a shorter than average stride length, but it is good enough for me- I am not bothered if stats are not 100% accurate.
    Your next run will be better, you did well to run that far in the heat!

  • I have happily used a Polar 200Sd (with foot pod) for 2 years and just splurged on the Polar RS800CX (as a gift to myself for PR’ing in San Francisco with a torn calf). Once calibrated the foot pod based watches are really accurate and great for checking your pace mid-run. The RS800CX is every geek runners dream … continuous recording/charting of Heart Rate, Stride Length, Cadence, Altitude + plus the option to buy more toys – GPS,Bike Sensor etc.

  • Carissa

    I have runs like that and just when I think I want to throw the towel in, I’m almost home and barnbroke horse runs for the shelter.

    I love my garmin. Such a great luxury!

  • Maren

    haha yes, they can’t all be good runs right? Good for you for not quitting….you would eventually regret laying with the raccoons haha! I run nike+. I like it except when I’m listening to my ipod and I have 400 meters to go…then 300 meters…then 200…then I want to throw my ipod into the lake!! It makes that last couple minutes seem like 10! Happy Birthday!

  • Garmin 305. In the city, it’s very cranky. Half the time I just start running and figure it out later (guess it defeats its purpose???).

    Anyway, I find the tough workouts are the most memorable when it comes time for game day. If it were easy, everyone would do it. My big races – I remember the workout I didn’t want to do, the one I struggled through, etc. Maybe it’s a mental thing…dunno.

  • I’ve been debating getting the 110 for a while now… Quick question – does it display your current pace? I thought I read somewhere that it only displays average pace at the end of the run?

  • The cupcakes look delicious!!! I love my Garmin 405 and am waiting for a smaller, prettier version to come out so I can pass mine off to my husband, hehe. I turn it on to locate satellites before I even head out the door, so it is ready to go by the time I am ready to run. Good job with the run, I know that feeling, sometimes I feel like I am running in jello or pudding and at a complete stand-still.

  • runner

    Cupcakes look great!

    I love my Garmin 110! Got it a couple of weeks ago and still feeling it out. I was sold after reading this review, if anyone is interested:

    Are u planning to use AutoLap for the marathon? Can’t decide whether I shd turn it off or not…

    Keep up the good work!

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  • Nice work Megan. So glad I did the workout elsewhere. 🙂

  • My Mr. Garmin is the 305 🙂 We’ve been together for 2 1/2 years and have had a great relationship. My one word of advice-treat it as a regular stopwatch during a race. Meaning-turn off “autolap”, take mile splits manually at the mile markers (I don’t even have the distance field on-just the total time and lap time.) As in a race, the Garmin distance is gonna be longer, it would just drive me crazy. I know some people like to use the Garmin to help with pacing in races, I haven’t found that I needed it for that…

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  • i appreciate the fact that you also admit to hating running sometimes. it makes me feel better about hating it on those days where i just want to stop, walk and swear off running altogether.

    and those cupcakes! how sweet of brian 🙂

  • Wow. I needed to read this post (I’m a little late commenting!). You’re so right. Sometimes running is just no fun. But I love your outlook… whining about it isn’t going to make it any better. The sooner you’re out the door the sooner its over!

  • Julia

    I have a love/hate relationship with my Garmin 405CX. I usually love it for giving me accurate measure of my runs and all sorts of pretty statistics and graphs (I’m a geek that way). When I hate it, I just don’t take it because I seriously don’t want to be a Garmin-slave kind of runner.

    I don’t have issues with the satellite acquisition, but I live in suburbia not the city.

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