Well, I overdid it again.
On Sunday, my husband and daughter went fishing, so I agreed to bring our other daughter and meet them at the lake for lunch (since all day on a boat is just a bit too much for me). They were leaving at 4am, and since no one in our house can do anything quietly ever, I knew I'd be up too (not that I'm bitter or anything). So I planned to do my 16-mile walk that day. I could start early, perhaps right after they left.
Well, I was all ready to go at 4:30 but it was still dark. We live in a residential area, but it's right on the edge of the woods (everything in Maine is right on the edge of the woods) and the woods in Maine are THICK. People get lost in those woods every year. Not that I was going into the woods, but I don't like the idea of walking by them in the dark. I have a big imagination and Stephen King doesn't live too far away. Need I say more?
So I waited and left at 5:00. It was still pretty dark, but the sky was lighting up and at least I could see where I was going.
Let me tell you, the roads of small town Maine are pretty deserted at 5:00 on a Sunday morning. It was just me out there. Not one other person or car. As I got about a mile down the main road into town, I was passing quiet houses and glimpses of the woods beyond. It was incredibly peaceful. And then I heard a coyote not far behind the houses.
Coyotes are pretty harmless in my book, unless one is a cat or a rodent. If I came across a coyote, I figure he'd be more afraid of me than I would be of him. But it was still partially dark and I was all alone. If you're heard the mournful, high-pitched howl, you know it can be a little unnerving. And then I heard a second one join in. Moments later, a whole slew of coyote howls and yips were coming from not more than 100 yards away.
And then they started getting louder. Or closer. Or maybe it was my imagination. Or Stephen King. Who knows, but I started looking around for a branch to use as a weapon, and I scanned some of the houses to see if any had porches or open windows I might scramble through in the event that the crazed pack of coyotes decided I looked like breakfast.
Within about 5 minutes, I had passed out of range and could no longer hear them. Crisis averted.
I got to the main part of town about the time the sun came up. I stopped at Tim Horton's (the only place open) for another bottle of water, and I have to report here, that although Tim Horton's has a lot of tasty menu items, their bottled water tasted like dirty melted snow. Ugh.
It was only about 60 degrees and I was feeling good, so I walked fast. BIG mistake. Between that and the Tim Horton's nasty-water, at about mile 8, when I was farthest from home, I sort of crashed. I was no where near any place that I could sit down, rest, use the restroom, or get food. I was walking through a sort of industrial area... so the smells didn't help either. I slowed way down and thought about just curling up on the side of the road to die - the road that had now become busy with Sunday morning traffic.
I plodded on. I finally reached a grocery store where I got to rest and refuel. At that point, I was just under 4 miles from home and by my ridiculous schedule, I had exactly one hour to get there. After all, I wanted to get to the lake! Now, 4 miles an hour isn't usually a problem for me. But after 12 miles of hard walking, I had very little left. Still, I pressed on and made it in 55 minutes.
It's amazing how quickly the human body recovers. Or so it seems. After stretching and eating, the endorphin rush kicked in and I felt great. A quick shower and then my daughter and I were on the road to the lake. We picked up lunch, found the rest of the family, boarded the boat, and then... it hit me. The nausea, the sleepiness, the confusion. I laid across the side of the boat, moaning, wishing for death. My husband suggested I get in the water to cool down, but I was afraid I wouldn't be able to swim. I was THAT tired.
I made it through the day, but after the crazy walk and too much sun, Monday was a recovery day. As was yesterday. Today I am finally almost finished being sore, but I'm still waiting until tomorrow to start back to the training schedule.
All the books and experts tell me to go fast on the short walks and slow on the long ones, but for me, everything is a race against time. I even do that when I'm driving - "Hey, let's see if I can make it to Boston in under 2 hours!" Competitive nature? Yeah, not always a good trait to have.
And still... not ONE pound.
Copyright © 2011 - Paulla Estes