Yesterday, like I do most days, I went running by the Charles. However it was no ordinary day. It was cold. The temperature was chilly and the wind arctic. I forged ahead. Hit the start sequence on my Apple Watch. My feet hit the pavement in sequence. My pace was fast. It felt good.
After crossing the river to Boston, one and a half miles in, it hit me. The wind seared my face. It robbed my breathe. I looked down. I tried to regulate my rhythm. One, two, breathe in, breathe out, steady beats. The faster I went the harder the wind pushed back. I turned backwards while trying to move forwards. I could not do it. I stopped. Hitting the wall is better than hitting the ground.
When you hit a headwind, when you hit the wall, the recipe is to stop thinking about the original goal and think about recovery. In training you are not trying to win a race, you are trying to get your body to be ready for that. My body is not ready, but I know one day it will be. My heart rate drops. The headwinds are still there, but I forge ahead, slower, but more determined.