My left bicep is recovering nicely following that punishing 21-mile trail run. Of all my body parts that take a daily beating from running,I wouldn’t have guessed that my left bicep would be the first to give.
My conclusion is that my left bicep is a victim of being under trained and then pushed beyond its biceply limits.
You see, while I am left handed I usually carry things in my right hand and over my right shoulder. When I shoulder my backpack, it’s always my right shoulder. When I carry a handheld water bottle, I use my right hand. When I need to take out the trash, you guessed it, it’s always my right hand. Apparently, I am rather one-sided!
So no wonder my left bicep threw a hissy fit on that last run. She just wasn’t up to the task. Poor girl!
On the other hand (I couldn’t resist a little hand pun) I should point out that besides the bicep cramp, Sunday’s run was a complete success – or as much of a success as a long run can be. Because honestly, long runs are always kind of a challenge, right? I mean, I have yet to meet a runner who has a string of perfect long runs.
Sometimes there is a physical challenge – my legs feel like lead or my stomach cramps.
Sometimes it’s a mental challenge – the miles just seem to DRAG on and on and on.
Sometimes, for whatever reason, the run just doesn’t go well and I feel obligated to finish, not for the love of running, but just so I can be done and on with my life.
I’ve experienced all those challenges, but they have seemed so much less dramatic in recent weeks. I suppose with my recent string of 20+mile runs and my high mileage (60mpw) weeks, I’m becoming desensitized to the whole long run process. I used to get nervous before a long run and a litany of questions would come up. What if I bonk? What if I go out too fast? What if I get stomach cramps? What should I eat for breakfast? When should I leave? Where should I run… The list goes on and on.
But somehow I’ve stopped being so anxious. So what if I bonk? What’s the big deal if I go out too fast and then crash? Who cares if it sucks?
Believing that it might indeed suck a little bit diffused my anxiety just a tad. I don’t have to have a perfect long run. In fact, maybe it’s better that I don’t – because if every run was perfect what would I have to blog about?