FINALLY! A great training run! Things are starting to look up. I met with my group of running friends, we call ourselves The Six Pack, at the NCR trail at around 6:30AM. It’s been a while since the Six Pack ran as a whole, so it was great to have most of us together again. The only thing that kept this run from being perfect was our missing sole sister, Sunny. So, I guess today we were more of the Fab Five instead of the Six Pack. Hopefully we’ll all run together next week… GO SIX PACK!
Our goal today, 11 miles slow and easy. Although we didn’t start at 6AM as we initially planned, we stared before the rest of the group which gave us a clear, uncrowded path for us to group up nicely and chat.
The purpose of the long run is to condition our muscles to delay the onset of fatigue. It’s about time on your feet and pace isn’t that important and running at your race pace could cause injury. (For more details about the long run, check out this article in Runner’s World: http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/general/in-the-long-run/163.html)
We took it nice and easy and according to my Garmin, we did a pretty decent job at keeping our pace consistent. Take a look:
- Mile 1 – 12:16
- Mile 2 – 12:16
- Mile 3 – 12:42
- GU @ 40 min
- Mile 4 – 12:35
- Mile 5 – 11:59
- Mile 6 – 11:51
- Mile 7 – 11:41
- GU @ 1 hour
- Mile 8 – 11:39
- Mile 9 – 11:40
- Mile 10 – 11:43
- Mile 11 – 10:54
The gradual increase in speed especially at Mile 11 is significant. We had a “negative split”, which means that we conserved our energy so that we could have a strong finish. We ran smart.
Our overall pace was 11:56, which was fine with me. You don’t have to be fast to be fabulous!
I GU’d at 40 minutes and at 1 hour, which helped keep my energy up. My knee behaved (thank goodness) and my lungs actually showed up to work today! I also tried “Fizz,” which is an effervescent electrolyte tablet that I added to my water bottles. It was gross. The taste was horrible and the fizz caused my bottle to “fart” for half of the run causing water to squirt up the sides of my arms. Yep…will not be using that again.
The best part of the run is running with my sole sisters. It’s like therapy, except it’s free and you’re talking to people you like. When you spend hours and miles with someone, you form a bond that cannot be explained. It’s a different kind of friendship/relationship than with non-running friends. We share each other’s joys and pain, we encourage and push each other to reach the sky. We draw on each other’s strengths and inspire one another. Most importantly, we don’t judge when you have to poop in the woods. In fact, we’ll hold your water belt and give you tissue.
Next run – recovery run tomorrow.