EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the latest in a series of weekly articles by Travis Daugherty, a 28-year-old veteran, a resident of Vienna and a program analyst for the federal government, as he participates in the Half Marathon Training Program conducted each Monday.
Daugherty left the military in January 2009 and didn't do any exercising until this year. During that time, he gained 70 pounds and had knee surgery performed in March 2011.
Tired of being overweight, he began an exercise program in January of this year, starting on a stationary bike and then moving to an elliptical. By the end of January, he started running and now is training to run in the Aug. 18 News and Sentinel Half Marathon.
This week's training run was 10 miles long. It started out at City Park with one of my normal running partners, Brian Brady. We began like some of the other training runs by taking Washington Avenue to the downtown area.
After passing the Courthouse and stopping at the first water stop on the corner of 2nd and Avery Streets, Brian and I made our way to the Firth Street Bridge. This is where I began to have some problems. I noticed that since I didn't have electric the couple of days before, I didn't hydrate well enough. Also the fast food that I ate the day before was coming back to haunt me. I haven't eaten fast food since I started running but when the power was out, I didn't have a choice.
I felt like I was dehydrated and I was beginning to get some stomach cramps. Honestly, I just couldn't run. Brian was feeling good and I told him not to let me hold him back. Once we crossed into south side and headed up Blizzard Drive, he picked up his pace and continued his run without me. My pace was slower than any group run I've even been on. I normally maintain a decent pace, but tonight I was the last person in the group. There weren't many of us due to the power being out and the heat. It was really hot, in the mid-90s.
Once I made it to the four mile mark, I began assessing if I could finish this run. I still just couldn't pick up my pace. I did a lot of walking. I stopped at the second water stop in front of Parkersburg South High School I had a few sips of water and continued on Blizzard Drive. I ended up calling my wonderful wife. I continued to walk but I knew I couldn't finish safely. Running is all about listening to your body. It was a night that it was just smart for me to continue running.
I crossed Broadway Avenue and turned left onto Camden Avenue. This is where my wife picked me up after only 6.5 miles. I was unable to finish this run even though I completed a 10 mile run in Marietta a few days before. I am thankful for a supportive spouse who is willing to bring me something or pick me up if needed. Thank you again, Babe!
I learned from this run that I need to hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate! I'm sure this will be fundamental when I'm actually running the Parkersburg Half Marathon in the hot August heat that is still to come.
When she was driving me back to the park, we passed the rest of the group and I felt defeated, but I knew I made the right choice. She dropped me at my car and I headed home with my tail between my legs.
Next week is the 12 mile route. It starts at City Park at 5:30 p.m. July 9. Even if you can't run or walk all of it, just come out and do what you can!