We started off our morning run with staggered starts once again. This is the best way for us to reach our potentials and listen to our own bodies. It was only 42 degrees when I headed out the door, so I quickly went and grabbed my arm warmers for a second try. Part of me wishes I would have put on my capri tights as my legs took a while to warm up. I headed down the road feeling great and enjoying the sunshine even though it was not warming me up. Traveling towards the hilly side of town, I hit several stop lights which gave me a breather. I finally hit the hills and pushed my way up them. These were mostly long and gradual. Nothing to get too excited about, but it is always nice to throw in some elevation gain even if it is only 400 feet. Still feeling great I powered through making my way towards our trail. I turned and took one look back to see if Brent was in sight. He was just a little bit behind me. Part way down the trail, he finally caught me. First thing he said was that he was able to see me for several miles and thought he would catch me on the hills. As of course, he runs faster uphill than I do. He just could not seem to catch me. I was having a great run! He caught me around mile 8 and we quickly started talking about how astonished we were that we had not seen my sister, Krista, yet. Usually I would have seen her by then, but she was no where in sight. We powered through the trail and made our way up a few more hills. Finally, there she was off in the distance. Still a ways off, we ran towards her. (Brent decided to run the rest of the route with me). We finally caught her around mile 13. We ran our last 3 miles excited as we knew we were almost done and had made great time. I finished in 2:31:25 to give me a 9:26 min/mi pace. I was stoked. I cannot wait for the half marathon in a week and then the marathon next month. After finishing, we headed home. We grabbed some vitamin water and a fruit leather and headed out for a cool down walk. Cool down is right. It was around 50 degrees. With all that sweat and the cool breeze, it was chilly. After making it home, we hopped in for our second “ice bath”. With little to no ice, we just ran the baths for as cold as the water could get. We had also done this after our 18 miler which helped our legs recover a lot, so we did it again. This time, I put on more layers of clothing. It seemed to help the coolness not be so overwhelming. After the 21 miler in a couple weeks, I say bring on the ice. It was chilly, but already I can tell that my legs feel much better.
Yes, even though it may seem crazy to some to have to do this, it is well worth every bit of running. If all my long runs were so amazing, I’d never stop. We will see how the 21 miler goes. Loving the distance, but I am getting tired of the training.