This Sunday started with a 17-mile training run and ended at the Wisconsin State Fair. I wish I could say the run was as fun as the corn dog eating, but it had its runner’s highs and its “why do I do this?” lows.
Usually when I start a long run feeling a bit tired and rusty, that means I’ll finish strong. If I feel awesome during mile two, I genuinely fear what’s to come at mile 12. This week’s run started off mediocrely, and my mile splits got faster and faster after mile 12—I felt fabulous. Maybe I was getting too cocky and the running gods needed to punish me, because OH MAN! Those last two measly miles hurt so much. Thanks a lot, right IT band.
But through it all, I could almost smell the fried fair food. As I squeezed kiwi-strawberry Honey Stinger into my mouth, I dreamt of cream puffs and funnel cakes. I would be rewarded for this crazy calorie-burning endeavor… all I had to do was keep running.
Walking around a giant fairgrounds after a kinda painful run may not be the best idea, but it was so worth it. There was pig racing, my friends. I got to cheer on The Notorious P.I.G., Lindsay Loham and Taylor Not-So-Swift. Look at them go!
By the time I got home and sat down to watch Netflix, my left knee grew so sore that I was hobbling around my apartment like an old lady. Still, the flying swings, baby goats and dock-diving dogs made my day. Sometimes running hurts, sometimes you don’t win the giant Bulbasaur stuffed animal you desperately want, but you’ve gotta keep your eye on the prize.