Keeping with this running theme I’ve got going on right now, I thought I’d share a little story from a race that took place nearly a year ago. Last April I was running the GW Parkway 10-Miler on what turned out to be one of the first really warm days of the season. As in, the temperature reached about 80 degrees by 11:00am.
I’d eaten a CLIF bar before starting out, deviating from my normal routine, but I figured I could use the energy. Around mile 3 I remembered just why I don’t usually eat before a race.
Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever tried running while clenching, but it’s not fun. And it’s not easy. There weren’t very many bathrooms along the way (I remember only one, there may have been another) so, had I stopped, there still would have been a line of people to contend with. And seeing as I was still in my competitive “maybe I can beat my last 10 mile time” mode, I didn’t want to stop.
But, good lord, 7 miles feels like forever when nature’s calling.
Now, take into account that I was getting dehydrated and the heat was making me loopy, and you’ll understand why I was a mess when I finally crossed the finish line. I was standing in front of the porta-potties, just staring at them, white as a sheet, when one of the friends I’d run with (the now-boyfriend) found me and asked what I was doing.
I whispered, “I have to poop. I’ve had to poop since mile 3!” He looked at me like I was crazy (fair) and gestured to the mostly empty porta-potties, that I’d just been staring at, blankly. “So…go.”
Afterward, and after I restored my energy levels a bit, I admitted to him: “The whole time I was running I kept thinking, if I actually poop my pants, do I have the guts to blog about it?“
Yeah. I don’t think so.
So here’s hoping that something similar doesn’t happen on Saturday (2 days!). Because mile 3 out of 26.2 is MUCH worse than 3 out of 10.