Second Wind

Second Wind
"Run With Purpose!"

Friday, May 31, 2013

blisters, porta-potties, and heat strokes: And then there's the Other runs....

Bloggers love to write about the good runs.  Those runs where you feel like you're floating, like you're feet don't even touch the ground, the breeze is blowing, and always behind you, cars slow down to look at you because you're going so fast (and you're running in the woods), you channel barefoot Ted somewhere in India and he answers...

and then there's the Other runs.   

Last night I left my truck at work and rode home with my wife (who I had met to watch my 5 year old graduate pre-k) so this morning I ran to work.  

1.  We have a newborn and are getting no sleep and Nothing crushes a run (mentally or physically) like no sleep.  A mile out of the gate and I knew my pace sucked, but what the heck, it's just a fun run to work anyway, right?  (self talk, self talk, self talk)

2.  There's a section of down hill that's literally 1/2 mile all down hill.  Awesome!  I LOVE downhill running more than anything else - That's how you fly!  Unless of course you're running sockless in a new pair of shoes that you've never tried before that happen to be a little long.  Half way down the hill I started to smell something -- "I thought someone was bbqing!.... but oh lord, it's a FIRE!" -- on the front pads of both of my feet.  I'm pretty sure they were melting.  Yay blisters.

3.  I get to the bottom of the hill, turn the corner to the flat for the next couple of miles and they show up.  Runners cramps.  Now, I'm not talking about those adorable little 'stitches' you get in your ribs when you're first learning to run, no no, I'm talking about nether region cramps where all of the sudden it feels like the Tanzanian Devil is declaring war on your colon.  Fabulous.
About a 1/2 mile up the road there's a porta-potty.  Now, I know what you're thinking, "gross!" and "it will never have toilet paper in it", and while you would normally be right, this particular porta-potty was  at a tennis court, and unlike runners, and soccer, baseball, and football players, tennis people have these things called "standards".  Score.  So I make it to the porta-potty and I find it pristine cleaned and freshly stocked, however there's another problem.  As you may know, running cramps of this nature don't give up (pass on) particularly quickly so I was now faced with 2 options:  get off the porta-throne before I really 'want' too and risk another attack in the next 2 miles to work OR pass out from heat stroke because we live in TN and if Satan himself had been sitting in this particular porta-john he would have been screaming to turn the air on.

I crawled out of the big blue incubator and back into the TN sun (which now felt like December after sweating off 10 pounds in last 3 minutes) and resumed my run, which caused me to face number 4:

4.  So now what?  I'm Really in a hurry to get where I'm going (namely an air conditioned facility at work) so I should run there as fast as I can -- BUT (no pun intended), the thought of bouncing and sloshing my volatile guts around by running seems less than ideal so maybe I should walk... which will then take longer... I really should have driven my truck home.

SO, the next time you have a less than ideal run, just remember this epic adventure of blisters, porta-potties, heat strokes, and the other 'runs' (see what I did right thur?)  and feel better about yourself ;)


  1. First off, this post is hilarious! Secondly, been there done that. Nothing worse than having that happen during a run. It happened to me at mile 9 of a marathon last year. Fortunately, I was near a port-a-john that had seen little use during the race. But, the whole process (having to go, the hot box, etc.) zapped my energy for the rest of the race.

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  3. This port-a-potty story is exactly what I wonder might have happened to Chad Rogers in MO this past week. I would imagine they would be hot, air-less and after a run with dehydration.... if you passed out you might not wake up. MO is very hot and very humid.

  4. GraceGirl, I thought the same thing...the heat is so oppressive that even on a short run like mine was that day, I genuinely feared that if I stayed in there another minute I would pass out. Then, if you did, you're still in that same heat that you passed out in with no relief.... certainly seems plausible and so heartbreaking