Another blogger - Casey put together this virtual 10k for her readers. I joined in because the timing was perfect for my training and also because this sounded like fun - and I'm up for fun so I did it, and I'm sure glad I did.
After a week of rain - I had been stuck inside since Wednesday and I'd lost my consecutive day running streak at 18 so I wasn't sure how I was going to respond to having three days off. My left hip had been bugging me a little so I'm sure the days off helped, but I was feeling a little nervous as I stepped out the door for this run. Weather-wise you couldn't ask for a more perfect day to run in. The rains had washed all the dirt out of the air, and the sky was clean and crisp. The sun was shining, and the temp was hovering right around 63 degrees, just perfect weather to go for a run let alone an attempt at a PR.
After doing a quick warmup, I setteled into the race itself. The course I decided on is slightly hilly but not too bad, in fact, I had set my current PB on this course back in March of last year: 1:04:11 so secretly I wanted to break 60 mins but I had no idea what to expect.
Right after I got going I knew this run was going to be difficult - the fact I hadn't had a difficult run in a while suprised me but having a difficult run the day I wanted to set a PB and after taking three days off? Now that really suprised me. It always amazes me how my body reacts in ways I never could guess or predict. You'd think after 39 years I'd know how I'm going to react. Maybe that's another reason why I enjoy running so much.
Anyway, I finished my first mile around 10:40 and I knew I was in trouble - my legs felt like dead wood and each step was difficult. That coupled with a shortness of breath really puzzled me. I should feel good dammit! Onward I pushed myself; mile 2 came in around 10:30. Slowly my legs began to feel better, and mentally I started to 'will' myself to run harder. I have a love-hate relationship with these types of runs, I know that pushing through this tpye of run makes me stronger and dammit I wasn't going to let two slow miles put me down. So right then I decided to stop 'watching my clock'. I put my head down and ran. Only then did I slowly started to feel better - focused I ran. Mile three, four, five went by without a hitch as I passed other Saturday morning runners. Slowly I noticed a smile had spread across my face and with Oingo Boingo "Stay" blaring in my headphones I cranked it up for the final mile. 1:01:33 at the finish! I did it, a PB and a PB that I had to work for. I'll remember this run for a while and that's good because I want to. Thanks Casey for encouraging us to do this. I needed to be challanged and I needed a difficult run.
Today I followed up my 10k race with an easy 4.5 mile run. Suprisingly I felt really good and even though I was supposed to run this at an easy pace (approx 9:45 pace) I did this at a tempo pace (9:12 pace). Legs felt strong and I felt really good. Once again the weather was perfect and I enjoyed getting out and hitting the pavement. It was like yesterday's difficult run had never happened. Funny. I don't think I'll ever understand this.
This week's schedule looks pretty easy - I'm supposed to roll in some track work but I'm not sure I'll have the time. I usually only get some free time after 8 pm so It will have to be at the local College.