Summer is hands down without a doubt my favorite season. I don't mind being hot. A good sweat is good for the soul. And there is just so much you can do involving WATER. I've always enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment that comes with a run in the heat.
HOWEVER, I've never trained for a long race in the summer, and wow is this pushing me. I'm in dire need of a long run. 7 miles is going to happen very soon on a treadmill, just so I can have the peace of mind that's where I'm at.
In the past week, every run I've done has been outside.
3ish miles Friday
3 miles Sunday
2ish miles Wednesday
2 miles Today (Thursday).
Life's been really hectic. My brother graduated from High School. My uncle was visiting from California. Work, work, work plus other random stresses/commitments led to no long run since the six miler post. I'm okay with this. June has been a "run for fun" month for me....which I think I needed to have between recovering from an injury and a true training schedule. This past week I did my best to get out there in the heat and get my body acclimated.
Friiiiiday afternoon... I drove to Richmond for my brother's graduation. I was really hungry when I hit the road and craving something cheesy. I caved at the sight of The Golden Arches for a Double Cheeseburger + Hi-C Orange Drink. Not sure why I was craving a beverage I used to order when I was five. I knew I was planning on running, figured this could be a bad decision, but thought "maybe it's the fries that lead to stomach pains" and didn't order those.
Friday as I set out on a 3 mile loop at my parents house around 6:00 P.M. I learned "NO, it's not the fries." I took a walk break at the top of the big hill at the two mile mark. And another before I made it back to their house. I'm of the belief that something is better than nothing, but I also freaked out that I couldn't complete this 3 mile run without walking and that I gave into a stomach ache due to poor food choices.
Sunday evening I went for the same run at 8:00 P.M. without any problems. I'm HOPING that the temperature of my half marathon on Labor Day will be more comparable to a run at 8:00 P.M. than a run earlier in the day. I told myself to take this run at a comfortable pace with completion being the only goal. I later learned my pace was 10 min/mi. I was thrilled to learn my "taking it easy pace" was right at 10 min/mi.
Yesterday I just didn't feel like running. I think I would have been fine if I had had time to go to the gym to run on a flat treadmill in air conditioning, but I had little-to-no motivation to run around my neighborhood in heat/humidity with hills. I ran about a mile loop then took a Powerade break. Because I knew I probably wouldn't make it more than another mile without stopping, I decided to do a "mile time trial" for kicks/punishment.
I felt like I was going at a good speed. This isn't a flat route. At the half way point my watch said 4:22. When I arrived back at my house and saw that my watch said 8:59 I dropped an F-Bomb. It was just one of those days.
[Even if you hate country you HAVE to watch this video to the 1:00 min mark!]
"Why couldn't I have at least finished in 8:44?!" was my only thought. Today I checked my route on "Map My Run" because I knew it was "about a mile." Turns out the one mile time trial I did was actually 1.14 miles. When I put my time and distance into the pace calculator website I use, I learned my pace was 7:52 min/mi!!!!
My gut reaction:
"Holyyy crap." Followed by: "That can't be right." But after doing some mental math...I think it is. It's only 8 seconds short of 8 minutes. I had absolutely no clue I could run that fast, and I think I'll soon be going to a local track to test my one mile time for realzies.
Today I ran 2 miles at a pace somewhere between 9:30 and 9:45 min/mi. I guess this is about what I've been doing on the treadmill, I'm just shocked I'm able to maintain the same pace outside with hills and HOT HOT HOT conditions such as these:
Sunday, June 20-- High: 93 Low:76
Monday, June 21-- High: 92 Low: 75
Tues, June 22-- High: 96 Low: 73
Wed, June 23-- High: 96 Low: 74
Thurs, June 24-- High:100 Low: 79
This is pretty awesome. I want one.