Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Slow and Steady
On Sunday, I lined up behind the starting line with a bunch of serious runners. For 10 miles we ran up and down the streets of this city... through downtown, bad neighborhoods, exclusive neighborhoods, the university campus, and past "Hospital Row". I surprised myself, and was able to do the whole thing without walking! Granted I have been building up to this run for months, but up until now, my longest run had been 8 miles continuously on a treadmill, and just shy of 7 miles on the flat trails by the lake.
One of my friends decided the run sounded like fun, and signed up at the last minute. She hadn't trained at all, so I tried to discourage her from it, but she attempted anyway. For the first 5 miles, I plodded along with her at a 12-minute pace, but ultimately ended up parting ways when she needed to stop. I think she was a bit upset at me for not stopping to walk with her. I am glad I didn't though, because the race organizers were pretty serious about only keeping the streets in town shut down for as little as possible. I finished at 1:57. As I stood at the finish line waiting for my friend, they started re-opening the streets and rolling up the finish line at 2 hours and 15 minutes. As it turned out, my friend had her husband pick her up at mile 7. I'm pretty sure if I had gone at my own pace, I would have completed the race at least 10 minutes faster.
The race was a lot of fun though, and I saw several parts of the city that I had never seen before. One of the highlights was a small park with lots of small hills and twisting paths around a pond. Best of all, I beat my own distance record! There's a half-marathon (13.1 miles) that Army Guy and I are planning on running with another couple in about a month, so I think I am well on my way to being prepared for that. As for the new running shoes, I'm planning on going to a running store in a couple of days to get custom-fitted.
After the race, I felt pretty good, and worked a full shift that night. Yesterday, I just felt kind of tired, so I limited myself to walking the hills around my neighborhood. Today, my shins are kind of angry, but I am nowhere near as sore as I had expected to be. Perhaps that slow start was a good thing after all!