Every time I increase my long run by a mile I wonder if I really did just run that far. I always double check on google maps before I set out on the run. Then when I get to the end of the run I do mental calculations because I know that I can run at least a 10 minute mile pace. I still almost never believe the mileage. I think that if I owned a Garmin I would still not believe the mileage it told me.
Now, today is not Saturday when I normally do my long runs. Tomorrow morning instead of running I get to sit by myself in a room with a computer and take a Spanish test for 3 hours that will determine a lot about my teaching status this year. (I promise to blog about that tomorrow.)
This morning when I got up and checked the weather on weather.com I knew that I would have to wait a couple hours because there was no way I was going to go out and run 9 miles in a sleeveless workout shirt and capri length workout pants in 45-50 degree weather. I bemoaned to my mother that all my chances to run in non-sauna heat were nearly gone and I would have to buy winter running gear if I want to keep running outside. (which I do…there simply is no comparison)
A little after 10 I got all my things together which amounted to putting my ipod in my armband, attaching the headphones and stuffing my license and half a protein bar in the little front pocket of my pants. Side note: I think someone in the Harry Potter world bewitched that pocket. When I first bought the pants I marveled that my tiny key for my gym locker fit in there but now not only does that key fit but also my license, half a protein bar and my car keys!)
I arrived at the YMCA where I parked at 10:13 so I gave myself a 10:15 start time and a goal of 11:45, a 10 minute mile pace.
As I started running I realized that even though I had used the restroom before I went my tiny bladder responds quite quickly to coffee and I realized that I would have to make a pit stop (first one of my running career…lol) so I planned to make just a slight detour to the McDonalds just a little bit in front of half way. That would add the .2 miles I needed to my route to make sure I got all the way to 9 miles.
When I turned around at my grandparents everything felt easier. There’s something psychological about the halfway point.
I had a new first as well. My run is long enough now that I need to refuel approximately half way instead of just holding off until right after I arrive back at my car. I really like using half a protein bar. (I tried a sample of Gu that I got at one of my 5ks. I thought it was absolutely disgusting!)
I don’t know for sure but I think that about mile 8 I started to feel it. My body has never been in motion for that long before. I kept going and blew my own mind when I started to increase my speed when I saw the signal by the YMCA. I don’t know where the strength came from but I ran nearly as fast as I could to get back to my car.
When I slowed to a walk I took off my armband to look at the time on my ipod. 11:44. I couldn’t believe it! When I knew that I had to make a pit stop I thought for sure that I would be arriving back to my car after 11:45. Even with the pit stop plus having to stop at one signal twice and two other signals once I ran 9 miles between the times of 10:14 and 11:44!
I felt so absolutely fantastic! I’m feeling it now, walking kind of like an old lady but as soon as the lactic acid runs its course I’m sure I’ll be back to normal. 😀 I can’t imagine what it’s going to feel like when I add 4.1 miles on to that distance. I’m so excited though and I’m almost ashamed to say that I’ve already started thinking about the facebook status that I’m going to post when I get back home after there race.