Saturday, January 7, 2012
Last night I mapped out an 18 mile run, basically an out and back run from our town to the next town over on an old highway. Apparently I went a little past my turn around point, because by the time I arrived back at the house I had logged 19.02 miles. My goal was to do a long, slow run. I used a run/walk ratio of 2:1 hoping to save my legs a little bit of agony later on. During the first 9 or so miles, I felt relaxed and happy, and found myself focusing on how beautiful this area is and how blessed I am to live here. The mountains are snow capped right now, and the route was a little bit of rolling hills with mostly farms along the way. At some points the road would peak and I could see mountains and valleys all around me. Little snowflakes started falling and it was very serene. I was enjoying myself so much, that I guess I didn't notice that I had a tailwind the whole time, and when I turned around to head back, I received a cold slap in the face. I spent the second half of my run with my jacket pulled up over my cheeks and nose just to be able to breathe. I was still able to maintain a consistent pace, and definitely accomplished my goal of going long and slow. It took me exactly 4 hours, which works out to an average pace of 12:38 min/mile. That's slower than I hope to go on marathon day, but I was happy that I was able to stay strong the whole time. When I looked at my Garmin download, I saw that my average running pace was right around 10 min./mile the whole time, while my pace during the walking breaks was around 16 min./mile. I can't tell you all how glad I am to have been able to get out on the road for a successful long run today. Training during the winter can be so tough, that it's good to have a few high points.