Today Rick and I got up about the same time as most Sundays to get on out to the Rock. It was a little cooler than normal, which makes me VERY happy. I simply do so much better in the cold! It was about 47 degrees when we started our run this morning.
Once we got "layered" up and stretched out we walked from the car to the road and Rick told me to take off - so I did! I felt like I started out pretty slow - it was feeling really good - but it turns out I did the 1st mile in 9:54, the second in 9:58...not bad times for this slow girl!! When we reached the 2 mile mark it was time to turn around and head back towards the car. This would give us 4 miles + the 9 miles around the lake so we could make our goal of 13 miles this week.
Like I said, I was feeling pretty good, and the 3rd mile proved it... another 9:58 pace - so the total for the 3 miles was 29:52. Pretty good for knowing we were doing 13! I just kept going....mile 4 passed in 10:14. At this point we were back where we started, so we went to the car and slipped out of the warm-ups - we were definitely warmed up! I had a little G2 - Rick took some as well - and we were off for the last 9 miles of the run.
Now it felt more real. We knew EXACTLY where we were and where we were going, as well as each stop along the way. In some ways that makes it a little easier. The miles slipped by pretty easily at first: 5 - 10:31, 6 - 10:40, (That gave us a 1:01:19 time here - just about where we were last week, and that made me very happy as well!) 7 - 10:32, 8 - 10:32, 9 - 10:47, (again - our overall time was 1:33:13 - 24 seconds faster than the week before - BONUS!).
At this point everything was icing on the cake...we had just matched our long run for the year...now it was a test to see if we could run the other 4 miles without walking. I was still feeling pretty strong, so I was pretty psyched that we could do it! Mile 10 - the 1st half - was just like the 1st 9 miles, then I guess I hit the proverbial wall! At about 9.45 miles out of the blue my legs felt like someone had added about 20 lbs. of weight to each foot! I just kept pounding the pavement and kicked that puppy out in 10:43:59. I was really glad Rick was there with me. It was at this point we stopped for our next-to-last water break. I was tired, but not yet tired enough to walk...and when I thought about how consistent our times were with the week before for at the 9 mile mark I just felt like I would be so disappointed in myself if I walked anywhere in the last 3 miles! Less than a 5K to go...we can do that, right? Off we went again. Still struggling mile 11 took 10:41:76. Certainly it wasn't like the heat was getting to me this time! Mile 12 - 10:44:17. We stopped again for water at the dog park water fountain. My thighs just above the knees felt like someone had tied double half-hitch knots in them - but we only had .73 miles to go...No stopping us now - right? As we came close to the car we tried to kick it up a little. We completed our last full mile in 10:55:77, and the extra little bit in 0:0:40.15 for a total time of 2:17:01. I was so happy with the run...no walking at all, and once we got to the car and I looked at the history, I was even happier....I told Rick - 13 miles, we finished STRONG, and not one mile took over 11 minutes!
I can not believe how well this run turned out. When I think back to when we made the decision we were going to try for a full marathon and started our training for the 1/2 next month and the full in December I hated to think about where we were then. We started with that 1st 2 mile stretch we ran today. We barely made it to the 2 mile mark! We had to run/walk back to the car because we were so tired and sore. To me this is an amazing adjustment our bodies have made to the rigors we are pushing them through. We are looking forward to our Human Race next week, and the DRC 1/2 in November. Since we will be running the 10K next week it will be the next weekend before our next real long run....we are going for 15 miles then...wish us luck - as always my #1 goal is to finish, #2 - finish with NO WALKING!
By the way - if you are looking for a smaller race to try...you might think about this race. It is a 5K race that was established after a 16 yr. old boy died of sudden cardiac arrest. The foundation was formed to help prevent SCA in youth through effective heart screening in student athletes. Just seems such a great cause I felt I should offer what little support here I could. Thanks!