There’s just something about that number.
I kid. The actual reason for the title being just the word “thirteen?” I couldn’t think of anything else to go with it. I need to work on that. ;)
As has been the case for a while, it took me longer to get going this morning than I hoped. There’s just something wonderful about laying in bed after hitting the snooze button for nine more minutes.
It also took me a few miles to get into the run too. I had a few moments of doubt about being able to maintain a sub 9 pace which is my goal for all long runs. I really have to stop thinking that way because right now, that 8:30 pace is an “easy” pace for me. My first mile was above 9, 9:17, but everything after that was textbook, pace-wise.
I don’t remember much about the parts in between that first mile and the turn around, except for the fact that I saw my friend Matt biking to work and realized that it was him right after he passed me. If there was a race that combined physical fitness and mental acuity I would probably come in last. It’s difficult for me to handle simple addition while running. :)
I loved seeing more runners out on the trail. It’s always fun to watch how spring brings out all the runners and cyclists. It’s even more fun to use them as motivational tools. I’d find someone a little ways ahead of me and determine to pass them. (I almost said that I tried to figure out how long it would take me to pass them. Then I remembered my poor thinking-while-running skills. :D)
At the turnaround point by Linky Stone Park, I felt amazing, really strong. Miles 6-7 of any long run seem to be my best.
A few miles later I started to feel a bit of fatigue in my legs. It was then I realized that this run capped off my highest volume week since MCM training ended. I’m a little sad that mid-thirties is high volume for me right now but I’m hoping to change that in the near future.
As I passed the spot where the side stitch attacked last week, I breathed a sigh of relief. I did something right this week to avoid any and all side stitches. (I’m not sure what that was though….)
I still felt the fatigue in my legs but I felt strong too. For the “fun” of it, I decided to try to get my last mile under 8. I started to pick up the pace but quickly realized that I could not hold that significantly faster pace for the whole mile so I backed off, a little.
Turns out, I had just enough! I clocked my last mile in 7:58 and didn’t feel like I was sprinting either.
I’m pleased with my 8:39 average pace for that run.
I think I might finally be getting some speed back and maybe, just maybe I’ll be able to break into the competitive tier. I feel like I’ve been just below for the past couple years. I’m ready.