Things learned in 14 miles

Yesterday was my first 14 mile run. It was hard, I’m not gonna lie. You would think that after accomplishing such a feat I would be excited and motivated…. right now I am just tired. Don’t get me wrong – I am really proud of myself and I do feel a sense of accomplishment for going so far, but mostly I am a bit scared! At this point I cannot imagine doing 26.2 miles.

However, on a 14 mile run there is plenty of time to think.

I thought about my year so far. Last December is when I had my first thought of running a 10K race. I remember the seed being planted by a friend. She was talking about a girl she worked with that was training and encouraging her to run it. My friend is not a runner and, at the time, I am not even sure how much she exercised. At that point I had already lost 40 pounds and was trying to decide what I was going to do next to keep myself motivated. I had always wanted to be a runner. I signed up for my first 5K in January and continued to have the 10K in my mind. The thought of running 6.2 miles was overwhelming. I doubted that I could do it. With a little encouragement I signed up and started training.

I remember when my long run was 4 miles. I was so worried I wouldn’t be able to do it. I did and was thrilled. It took me a couple of weeks to work up to 5 miles, then 6 miles then my LONG run at 7 miles a week or so before the race. I remember being beyond proud of myself for that mileage.

I thought of all this while running my 14 miles, but no matter how hard I tried to stay positive and focus on my past accomplishments all I could think about was how many miles I had left to go. Mile 6 was hard – at mile 6 I still had EIGHT miles to go. That is really hard to take. EIGHT MORE MILES. I think I even cussed a bit to myself wondering what the heck I was doing out there. Why the heck would I want to run this long. This is absolutely ridiculous.

Mile 7, mile 8, mile 9… same thoughts. At mile 10 it started to get a bit better when I realized I only had 4 more miles to go. There was a point at mile 10 when I was literally running from point to point. I was focused on getting to a particular tree, then a crack in the road, then a bridge, then past a fence. I kept repeating KEEP RUNNING… then I pretended Jillian was yelling at me “Unless you faint, puke or die…. KEEP RUNNING!!”. I kept running. finally mile 11, then mile 12.

At mile 12 a new kind of pain set in. I discovered when chafing starts. I thought I conquered chafing with my compression shorts. I haven’t had that problem in months. I see ads all the time for a product called “Body Glide” to help runners with chafing. Well, I never bought any because I have my fancy compression shorts now.

I am here to report that there ARE other types of chafing. For me it is my sports bra around my rib cage. Apparently it is now too big because it is just lose enough to rub just slightly enough to cause pain. At first it was annoyance, but after awhile, especially when the sweat started rolling it was pretty painful. Trying to ease my pain occupied my thoughts for the next mile.

Other things that I learned:

  • Music is important but you can get really tired of listening to the noise after 2 hours.
  • Foot pain does not go away the more you think about it
  • It is very hard to keep your chest up and run with good posture after 12 miles
  • Everything hurts the next day

Hopefully one day I will look back on this 14 mile run the same way I am looking back on my 4 mile run now!

Right now I am very tired and really need to lay down. It is back to running tomorrow. I sure hope my muscles feel better!




  1. Ted

    Laura, you are doing good and working your way up. Makes me wonder what you will be thinking when you complete that marathon. It bought Forrest Gump to mind and I had to look it up.

    “That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run. So I ran to the end of the road. And when I got there, I thought maybe I’d run to the end of town. And when I got there, I thought maybe I’d just run across Greenbow County. And I figured, since I run this far, maybe I’d just run across the great state of Alabama. And that’s what I did. I ran clear across Alabama. For no particular reason I just kept on going. I ran clear to the ocean. And when I got there, I figured, since I’d gone this far, I might as well turn around, just keep on going. When I got to another ocean, I figured, since I’d gone this far, I might as well just turn back, keep right on going. When I got tired, I slept. When I got hungry, I ate. When I had to go… you know… I went.”

  2. lauraph2009

    You are so funny! If you find me running clear across North Carolina then you know I have lost my mind.

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