…that reminded me why I love to run. The truth is that I love to run like 95% of the time, but that other 5% can really drag me down. Thankfully, there are the fantastic runs that stand out and remind me why I lace up my running shoes and hit the pavement.
In my typical Monday fashion, I felt lazy yesterday and opted not to run outside in the morning with Zain. It was chilly and windy in the morning so running with the stroller didn’t sound appealing. I planned to hit the treadmill during naptime for a 5 mile run. Hubby decided to just work a half day and came home in time for me to go for a run. I considered still running on the treadmill, but he told me to run outside because it was a pretty afternoon. I’m glad I listened to him.
As I got ready to head out the door, I started to get excited to run – that honestly doesn’t always happen! I felt like my run had so much potential since it’s so rare that I do a training run during the week alone. I was happy to take advantage of the fact that I didn’t have to push a 30lb toddler in a jogging stroller.
The 5 miles with 5 strides I had originally planned to do sounded boring so I decided to give a tempo run a try. The other tempo runs I’ve done were on the treadmill which felt very different from doing it outside. I planned to warm up for a mile, run 5 miles at an 8:20-8:30 pace, cool down for a mile – 7 miles in total. I know I can hit that pace, but I usually do it in the last mile or 2 of a run when I feel that it’s safe to use up the remainder of my energy. I didn’t know if I was really capable of running that “fast” for 5 miles non-stop.
This is what happened:
Mile 1: 9:29 (warm up)
Mile 2: 8:39
Mile 3: 8:23
Mile 4: 8:33
Mile 5: 8:37
Mile 6: 8:18
Mile 7: 8:34 (cool down)
My cool down was faster that two of my tempo miles! After I finished mile 6, I consciously tried to slow down, but my pace didn’t really change much. I must have tricked my legs into going faster that they usually like to go.
While I was running, I didn’t actually feel awesome. I had eaten lunch too soon before I ran so I felt like I was teetering on the edge of the puke zone for most of the run. I managed to push through that feeling. My neighborhood is rather hilly so I had trouble maintaining a totally steady pace, but I did the best I could.
When I finished my run, I looked at my watch and saw I had run 7 miles in just over an hour. I’ve never run that fast before. I was so happy when I finished this run. I kept thinking that I can’t wait to do another tempo run! Ya know what else is awesome about running fast? You cover the miles faster. I know – duh! As I was running, I loved how the miles ticked by so quickly because I was moving faster than usual.
Sappy sidenote: I have the best hubby in the world. He’s the reason I got to go for a solo run outside on a beautiful afternoon. He wrote me a note to tell me how proud he was of me before he had to jet off to his grad class. AND he made a donation to Team in Training for me yesterday morning which brought me to my fundraising minimum. He’s my number one supporter. I’m so lucky.
It feels great to kick off the week with a great run. An awesome run puts me in a much better mood and makes me feel optimistic about everything. I’m ready to tackle a big week which will end with a 22 mile run on Saturday. Bring it!
Have you had any awesome runs lately?