Ok. So I haven’t been blogging much lately, but as I sweat through these hot and humid summer runs, I’ve finally been inspired to get back to the blog. I’d say I’m about to write about something inspirational, or motivating, or even mildy educational. But instead, I’d like to tell you about my recent “worst run”.
It was a Thursday. I had busied myself all day long at work (don’t act so surprised), and I had neglected to eat lunch. So, by the time I reached Target at 3pm to pick up some essentials, I was famished. Being the smart, healthy, nutritious gal I am, I thought I’d just pick up something light for a snack, as I had intended to run later that evening with the running club.
And then, like a beacon of light. No, like the sound of a trumpet. No, like a vision in a dream… my hunger pointed me in the direction of what I NEEDED to have in my belly.
I’ve been trying to eat healthier, so obviously I opted for the “Reduced Fat” version. (READ: Reduced Taste, but still close enough). I filled my cart with my other essentials and checked out.
Upon arrival to my humble mode of transportation (a 2002 Chevy Malibu in Driftwood with custom cracked bumper and duck tape detailing), I swore that I was not going to dig into the Cheez-its until I arrived home. I simply refused to be “one of those people”… you know, no -self-control- driving -with -oranged -fingers -and -crumbs -on-the-floormats people. Pah-LEEZE. I was hungry, but I wasn’t a monster.
Fast forward three blocks later. I had ripped the top of the box open, and so began my spiral of shame. God, Cheez-Its are good! And these reduced fat ones were probably making me look skinnier already!
By the time I reached home, I was ashamed to admit, I’d done some damage to that pile of perfect, cheese-dusted crackers. About a third of the box was gone. (but hey, most of that is air, right?) As I parked my car, I stopped my ravenous raid for a moment. Looking in the rear view mirror, I wiped the crumbs from my face. Then I ate them.
Looking ahead to my run in a few hours, I figured I should counter my cracker binge with an appropriate amount of water. It was hot, and I had just eaten my yearly allowance of sodium (dang! why didn’t I go for the low-sodium box!), so I filled my water bottle and began chugging.
I should have seen it coming. I mean, I have seen those “grow in water” toys. A half hour after my hydration fest, and about fifteen minutes before running club, it hit me.
I looked like I was having a Cheez-It baby. Worse, I was wearing an orange tank top (normally loose-ish, but under the pressure of Baby Cheez-It, it had lost its give). I felt, and looked, like a bloated, pregnant, Cheez-It. Complete with residual crumbs on my cheek. I wonder if anyone at running club would note the bloat.
Why, oh, why, had I done this to myself?
Determined to run anyway, I set off with the group. I just hoped no one could hear the slosshing noise booming from my stomach. With each step, the Cheez It paste in my gut churned and bubbled. THIS COULD GET UGLY.
And now, I could only loathe the crackers I had onced loved just hours before. I felt heavy, and slow, and embarrassed, and ashamed. And it was all because of those damn Cheez-Its. They just jumped into my mouth. Stupid crackers. And what kind of way is that to spell cheese, anyway!
One and a half miles into the run, I felt more like I was rolling down the street. With the taste of yellow No. 5 and cardboard lingering on my palette, I faked a “hey-guys-go-ahead-I-need-to-stop-and-stretch-this-nagging-injury”).
Happy to turn around and head back, I ran-walked the remaining distance, and rolled into the door, and hung my head in shame. Worst. Run. Ever.
I guess we all make bad choices on the run from time to time. Forcing distance or speed on an injury, arriving at a race underprepared, not hydrating properly, or in my case, making an ill-advised food choice prior to a run. But in the end, the point is, we get out there the next day (or the day after that) and run again. Because we know there will be better days ahead.
So, I learned the hard way. Turns out, Cheez-Its are best enjoyed while competing in the sport of channel-surfing.