I know, I know, I've been a terrible blogger lately! My sincere apologies. My schedule for the past 5 weeks or so has been alternating one week out of town, one week home, etc. In the midst of all my travel and lack of sleep, I manifested a fierce cold which eventually became a case of laryngitis and left me cranky and without a voice for several days. I am happy to report that despite the various obstacles I've encountered, I have remained consistent with my half-marathon training!
As I've mentioned before I am training with a Galloway running group. We meet at the ridiculously early hour of 7am every Saturday morning for a long run. A couple of weeks ago I completed my longest run to date - 9 miles!! We had 10 miles on the schedule for today but due to the insane temperatures happening on the east coast, they scaled it back to 8 miles. I chose to stay home and complete my miles in the comfort of my own neighborhood rather than run with the group today. This was partly due to the temperatures but also due to wanting to prove myself wrong.
See, on the last couple of long runs with my pace group I have found myself saying "I'm so glad we run together, I don't think I could do X miles on my own." That was not a line of thought that I wanted to get stuck in because I won't necessarily have my pace group at my side during the half. So I decided to show myself that yes, I can run X miles all by myself. I slept in this morning, if you can call waking up at 6:30am "sleeping in" and set off on a journey around my neighborhood. I've never run more than about 5 miles at a time around here so I had no idea where to go to fulfill my distance but the route I took ended up being pretty perfect.
During my first mile, my legs hated me. I feel that often the first mile of a long run is more difficult to get through than any "wall" I've encountered to date! After that I was cruising and I felt great. I had put on my "loudest" outfit this morning - a neon green tech shirt, black shorts and my hot pink Zensah leg sleeves. I knew it was colorful and obnoxious but I was shocked my how much attention I received. Maybe my fellow runners and walkers were delirious due to the heat but everyone had enormous smiles on their faces as they wished me a good morning and a great weekend. I have said it 5,000 times before but runners are just the nicest, most amazing group of like-minded people I've ever encountered. It was excellent motivation to keep going!
I kept an extremely (surprisingly?) steady pace for the first 7 miles of my run. By the time I began mile 8, the shade had escaped me and I was running in mostly direct sunlight. My water supply was also dangerously low and I was thirsty! I knew there was a water cooler on the golf course about a mile away from home and I am so thankful for that knowledge and for that delicious, cold water. I ended up walking the rest of the way home, trying to cool down and collect myself. Even with the water stop and the mile walk, it was my fastest long run to date! I ended up doing about 8.22 miles in 1:48:45. Awesome. It is so reassuring to know that it is barely July and I am already running 8-9 miles! By the time November rolls around, I should be able to go the distance of 13.1 without a problem.
Which leads me to an exciting announcement... I signed up for my second half-marathon! I know, I haven't even completed the first one yet. But I am confident that I will complete it successfully. Did I mention my second half has the name diva in the title, is run at the beach, provides runners with a tiara and a boa, AND champagne and a rose delivered by a firefighter at the finish line? I can't make this stuff up people. It very well may be the run of my dreams lol. It's the Divas Half-Marathon in Myrtle Beach and takes place on April 28, 2013. I can't wait!!!