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Energizer Bunny Run

Saturday, August 27, 2011

I posted last weekend how I had a fairly lousy 7 mile run...though I did it so I won't complain too much! But, the weekend before I'd ran 6 miles and felt like the Energizer Bunny (EB). Well, I had another EB run today!

I am tapering a bit for my 5K two weeks from today, so today's run was back down to 6 miles. It was a little cooler...79 degrees at the start & at the finish...and we ran early so I was only in the sun about 1/2 a mile total! There was even a slight breeze when we started.

Also, on the day before last week's 7, I'd overdone my workout. This week, I did a wonderful step class the day before. I know that isn't resting, but I really wanted to do it & I held back from then doing a BodyPump class!

My coach's goal was for me to start at a 13:05 pace & drop 15 seconds per mile. Well, lately I start off at closer to 12:30-12:45 & it feels comfortable, so I thought I could do it. However, my starting pace was about 13:20. I didn't think that could possibly be correct. But, I kept trudging along & told myself this was a long run & not to fret the pace at the start. Just stay comfortable!

Both the 1st & 2nd mile were at 13:00+ paces. A little disappointing, but I was feeling really good. I was running without walking & feeling strong.

This is an out & back course which is mainly on a paved trail, so I turned around at mile 3. Mile 3 was closer to 12:45. (I'm at the lake house & don't have my Garmin watch to check.) I was halfway done & it was time to pick up the pace. Only 3 miles left & I was getting that EB feeling again! It feels like my legs are on autopilot & can go on forever! Every half mile or so, I picked up the pace. I started passing people who were walking. WooHoo! (though they are in other groups or not even with us, it feels good because I am running & don't have to walk!)

For the last 3 miles, so for over 30 minutes, I listened to the same song over & over. It just had the perfect rhythm. I've done that before, but never for 30 minutes. Does anyone else do this?

Mile 4 was about 12:15. I pick up the pace & felt terrific. Mile 5 was about 11:55. Yes! Then, ouch! My side splits are back. Gotta keep running though. See if I can work through this. I breathe in through my mouth & out through my nose. I push on it. I stretch. I pretend to chew gum. And, I keep running slowly...about 14:00-14:30. I had this same pain 2 weeks ago at mile 5...& dealt with it while running the entire last mile. Today, though, it only lasted 1/4 of a mile! Now, I was ready to pick up the pace.

I started running a little faster. A first I was afraid the pain would return. It didn't so I went a little faster. Here in the last mile there are a lot of people walking, so it was kind of nice to start picking them off...a new experience for me! Some were even running & I'd catch & pass them! Again, this group has all paces of runners & a walking group, so this isn't a big deal. But, for me it is a big mental hurdle! To actually pick out a runner and decide I will catch & pass them is a totally new experience for me!

With half a mile to go, I picks up more speed. I was going under an 11:00 pace. At 5.8 miles, I was ready to finish strong. I was running at 10:20! that's extension fast for me! I realized my breath automatically switched to "in through the nose, out through the mouth." I was huffing & puffing, but knew I could do this.

With a tenth of a mile to go, I went even faster down the last little stretch towards the 'finish line'. I was going in the upper 9:50s! And, I did it! I finished really strong! It felt amazing!

I looked at my Garmin. My HR was 175...that's faster than I've seen it, but it is a great place to be. WooHoo...what a feeling. Runner's high?

On Monday, I will be doing a mock 5K. I'm worried about the heat, though it'll probably be hot race day, too. Anyway, I'm excited to see how it goes!

Hope you all are having great weekends...and staying safe if you are on the East Coast!
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