As I mentioned in the previous post, I once again left a lot of miles to be run on the weekend. This weekend, however, I actually ran them. I really need to get some miles in for the Fall 50 and the long runs need to start taking up the bulk of my mileage. Today I was up and out of the house by 9 AM for a run with Parsenn. He doesn't run particularly well in certain conditions, such as hot, humid, early morning, on pavement, sunny days, or cooler, any-other-time-than-early-morning, on trails on overcast days for that matter either. (I know...very poor grammar in that last sentence, but it's late.) While it's tough for me to swallow, he simply isn't much of a runner dog. Luckily, he's very well behaved and a lot of fun to play Chuck-It with, so we keep him around.
Parsenn could do this allllll dayyyy. Running with his dad, on the other hand, has a time limit of roughly 7 minutes.
At any rate (pun intended), I took him out for a short run to start my day. I knew that having him around would keep my pace quite a bit slower. Mission Accomplished, as I ran 2 miles (including two potty stops) in about 17 minutes.
Next, it was on to an out and back loop totalling 14 miles (the Southern part of the map linked to above). I wanted to complete 30 miles today in preparation for the Fall 50, so I knew I had to keep the pace slow. At every mile marker of this particular 14 mile out-and-back I walked at least 2 minutes. Arriving back at home, I was still feeling great and was under 9 minute pace. Doing great!
I reloaded on Clif Shot Bloks and nuun, chugged some gatorade, and hit the roads again, this time for a 14 mile loop. Unfortunately, during the first 6 or 7 miles of this loop, I could feel the fatigue setting in. Still, I kept plugging away and reached a convenience store to refill my bottle with ice water and take in some sodium in the form of a candy bar. It really hit the spot and I was on my way again in a power walk/slow jog. Still, things weren't feeling that great and the thought of calling it a day was crossing my mind. I was about 25 miles into the day and was feeling my left heel a bit, and the positive effects of the convenience store stop and begun to wear off. Discouraged, I decided to call Ellie and tell her I could use a ride home. She, however, did not answer. I guess I'll be finishing my run. About a mile later, an angel appeared along my route.
This angel didn't have wings, though. She was wearing a bike helmet and riding a Specialized Mountain Bike. And she wasn't playing a harp. Instead, she was honking a really annoying bike horn.
Ellie had decided to bike out to me along my route, bringing along Gatorade, Ice Water, and SunBlock. What a woman! I told her about how I had just tried to call, and she suggested we sit down for a bit in the shade and then make a decision. That 5 minute break totally re-energized me! Ellie left soon after on her bike and rode home, returning in the car to pick me up. In the time it took her to get home and drive back, I covered 3 or 4 more miles and actually sprinted to the car when I saw her ahead along the side of the road. It was a great finish. Sitting down in the car, I stopped my watch (which had run continuously since I left with Parsenn in the morning) at 4:50.
After eating and getting cleaned up, I mapped out my run and was pleasantly surprised to see I covered 29.29 miles on the day, for an average pace of 9:54/mile. Not bad! I'm hoping to average 10:45 during the 50 miler, so I was happy to feel as good as I did at a faster pace. Today the legs are a bit sore but I think that may have a bit to do with the fact I got up last night at 1:30 AM to watch Team USA beat Spain for the Gold in Basketball. It'll be an early bedtime tonight.