I’d like to thank my wonderfully strong and toned leggies for this success. You’ve carried me so far, but I never thought you could carry me this far at one time.
Today, I did my first long run since my half marathon training re-commenced. I dutifully prepped the evening before – laid out my clothes, drank lots of water, got to bed early, and visualized success. Of course, the t-shirt and heat gear pants I set out ended up being not so useful after the 40 degree drop in temperatures overnight, but I thought quickly and adapted.
I practiced goal setting on this run. I set 3 possible goals for my 8 mile run:
1) Finish. End of story.
2) Keep my average pace under 12:00 min/mile.
3) Keep the pace around 11:00 min/mile.
I implemented a 10:1 run/walk strategy that served me very well in the first 4 miles. In fact, I was on target to smash all 3 goals, with the pace for the first 4 miles just under 11:00 minutes. Rock it out, baby!
Just after hitting the mile 4 marker, I walked for a bit longer and chomped down my Shot Bloks. On my long runs, I carry (Ian’s) camelbak, so during each walk break, I was making sure to get water in my system. This mile came in around 13:00 min/mile, but with a cushion built in from the first 4 miles, I wasn’t overly concerned – besides, I was cruising along, feeling strong.
That strong feeling kept on keeping on until about mile 6.5, when all the sudden my legs got tired. My hips ached, my knees ached, my calves ached. Not injury ache, but the typical “you’ve been running for an hour+, dummy!” kind of ache. I won’t lie, I kinda enjoyed it. It told me that I worked hard and didn’t let myself slack.
The last mile ticked by in just under 12:00 minutes. When I looked at my watch, my total time was 1:34:01 – a pace of 11:45 per mile.
2 outta 3 goals ain’t bad, and to top it off, my foot NEVER even twinged, I never felt out of breath, and my legs ached with that sweet feeling of a job well done.
Part of the reason I set these 3 goals was to practice goal setting for Race Day. I’m starting to think that a 2:30 finish time would be a good HOLY MOLY, I’M FREAKIN’ AWESOME! goal – definitely a challenge, but not out of reach, at an average pace of 11:27 – and yes, i borrowed your math, Book Worm – thanks!! 😉
I wish I could run 8 miles everyday – perhaps, someday…