Getting it done
I wasn’t sure if I was going to run this morning. My friends were meeting at 7:30, and at 7 I looked at the temperature – 3F! I texted them to say I was going to pass. At 8 I got ready to head to the gym, but once I got outside I figured it wasnt that cold, so I went back inside, bundled up, and headed out for my run.
Before I got my wonky hip, Jay had given me a workout for today in preparation for my race. EDIT: Now that I go back to look at it, I had it wrong, but this is what I thought it was: 10 miles. The first few easy, then pick it up, then mile 9 a bit faster than race pace, then a last mile easy. I figured I’d at least go out easy and see how I felt, but I gave myself permission to keep it slow or shorten the workout.
It was certainly cold to start out, but I felt good and enjoyed running along with music – I rarely do that anymore! I started with country and folk and just enjoyed being outside in beautiful Colorado. I noticed in the first mile that I was throwing back a perfectly acceptable pace, especially since I couldn’t feel my toes!
I cruised along the route we’d used last week for our fartlek run, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that at 25 minutes I wasn’t too far off the turn around point we’d used for that workout. I felt good, and although my hip wasn’t perfect, it certainly didn’t worry me at all in terms of feeling like I had to be careful about it.
My third mile (still feeling easy) was an 8:28 pace, and I committed myself to the workout Jay had given me. I squeezed up the pace a bit, but still didn’t worry too much about hitting a certain pace. In all, I felt really strong and good, and I had confidence that I was executing the workout well without micromanaging my pace. Less than 16 minutes later I was at the turn-around point. The nice thing about this course is that it IS uphill on the way out, so I knew the return trip would feel great!
Oh! I’d had my playlist on shuffle, but part way into mile 4 Girl Talk’s “All Day” came on. I adore this song to run to, and it’s over an hour long!! So I knew it would be the song that would bring me home. It’s also much more upbeat than the Dar Williams and Taylor Swift I’d been listening to, which I figured would also help me on the way back.
Sure enough, the minute I turned around, it was like I smelled the barn. I dropped the hammer, and actually DID have to force myself to hold back a bit. I really wanted to fly, though! Soon enough mile 8 came and I let myself go. I was a bit faster than race pace and I was shocked with how short the mile seemed! It wasn’t the easiest thing in the world but I was definitely able to get the legs going and settle in. Although Jay’s original instructions had been for a pace a bit faster than race pace, I’d have been thinking it was good to settle in on that pace to get used to it, but I felt fine just a little faster. Then that mile was done and I had one final “easy’ mile to complete. Of course, once you’ve done a fast mile, easy is relative, and I still came in nice and quick.
I am SOOO glad I went out today and got this race in. It definitely was a huge confidence and excitement boost. My hip felt fine (I did have one brief mind-attempt-to-sabotage-me moment when I watched my shadow to try to assess if I was limping. I told myself to shut up and ignore me) and I nailed this final workout. In all, 10 miles in 1:18 (a 7:47 pace)
M9: 6:45 (TRP: 6:51)
I did double-check this morning on pace groups, and I’m no longer sure there will be one for me next week, so I need to mentally prepare for how I’m going to execute. Honestly, my run went so well today I’m considering running with music exactly how I did today – a few easy feel-good country/folk at the start so I don’t go out too fast, then All Day for the majority of the race 🙂 The only thing I need to consider is if I want to try to create a playlist that’s pretty well exactly the length of my target race. Heaven forbid something goes wrong, will I completely fall apart if the song ends before I do? Something I ponder…