It seemed like a nice day for a run Sunday so I headed off on the Ridgeland trail with about 10 pounds of water in my Camelbak. When I got to the end of the dirt trail, I crossed over to the Natchez Trace and kept on towards Clinton with thoughts of going 26+.
By the time I made it to the County Line overpass, the stench from the nearby dump was making me sick…well, that and the fact that I was already dehydrated and probably suffering from heat exhaustion. I turned around at mile 10.5 and ran back on the Trace towards the Rice Road parking lot. The Trace is closed from the Interstate south and it was quiet except for lots of cyclists getting ready for triathlon season. It’s also wide open and completely without shade.
I’m not sure why, but I decided to wear my Merrell barefoot shoes. I had done a lot of 4-5 mile runs in them but nothing longer. My feet hurt so bad at the turnaround, I wondered if I was going to even make it back at all. The zero cushion, zero drop feels great on 5 mile runs but not so great after 10. Probably the only positive thought I had on the way back was about the steaks I was going to grill for dinner. That thought usually led to anxiety that it was taking so long to get back to the car, we might be having steak for BREAKFAST.
I did make it back in time to cook but I had to stop by the store on the way home…with sweat soaked clothes and salt crusted face. Sitting in the Kroger parking lot, I was really starting to feel nauseous but I pressed on anyway. I remembered feeling like this during my first marathon on miles 20-26 and I survived that experience. Truth be told, I remembered feeling like this after a few all night band practices too.
At the meat counter, I couldn’t get the image of pink slime out of my head and I just wanted to get home so I grabbed the first package of rib eyes I found. It must have been the most expensive and freaking huge steaks they had but I couldn’t put them back and select a more appropriate cut. I was already starting to get “that feeling”. You know…the mouth-watering, stomach-tightening, whose-bright-idea-was-it-to-chase-tequila-with-Jager feeling…
And then I threw up.