Since we ran the race in Hickory yesterday, we decided to stay in Morganton instead of going back to Asheville (click here to see the locations of these towns if you wish). I had a hard time deciding if/when I was going to run today, but once I got my clothes on and figured an approximate route, I did much better.
I ran up near Lake James in a neighborhood called Southpointe. It’s a pretty underdeveloped area, so there’s hardly ever traffic, and I saw a family of four deer while I was there (it wasn’t even feeding time, it was more like 12 noon!)
Here is the route. It’s a lot of out and backs which I am generally not crazy about, but it was okay. It was quite hilly, and so my pace was just over 10 min/mile, which is actually pretty good. It wasn’t too hot or too cold, and I didn’t really sweat as much as I normally do. I forgot to wear my heart rate monitor, but did bring my watch and was able to time myself. About 8.3 miles in 1 hr 26 minutes. I am quite happy with the results of my run.
I woke up a little sore from yesterday’s run, and from not properly stretching out. My quads and calves are sore, which indicates to me that at times I was pushing too much up the hills (calves) and probably opened up a little too much on the downhills (pulled quads.)
But today, I took it easy, and (gasp!) ran with music… I know Danny isn’t a fan of using music, but I just didn’t have the brain today to go out by myself and do a bunch of random loops by myself. So the music really did help me, and based on my time, it seems like it actually had little effect on my speed. I listened to techno-style (downtempo) and Latino salsa music, both of which have pretty fast regular beats.
About 1 mile into the run, I made a decision that with every step of today’s run, I was going to do my best to make sure that EVERY step of my run was so good that nothing in my body hurt…
I was actually able to create that, much to my surprise. My right hip flexor is still a little sore from yesterday, and I am due for a good stretch/massage. Other than a little twingy hip flexor, I really didn’t have any major complaints. I just kept going at an easy pace and didn’t force myself or berate myself or congratulate myself. I just kept going until my time was up. It was hilly, and so when the uphills came, I tried to keep my leg stride small and behind my body, and get my armswing really exaggerated, up in the hill and pumping up, relaxing down. I never felt that my heart rate really got too high, and on the downhills, I tried to keep leaning, making sure I kept my core engaged and didn’t collapse.
Wow. I kept marveling at the fact that at 45 minutes I was only halfway finished and that I felt totally fine. My PRE was quite low all the way today, and I think I can contribute it to a) the music, b) the weather, and c) ChiRunning
This was the longest amount of time AND distance I have ever run in my life in one session. (I did an Outward Bound relay race several years ago, but I didnt do any legs longer than 6 miles!)
Totally incredible, I feel like I am really reaching the goal that I will be able to successfully complete the Houston 1/2… Who knows, maybe I can even have fun doing it!
Posted in Technique