I've been running a lot. Well, maybe not a lot for some, but a lot for me. I've got 73.7 miles logged so far for August, and I probably have 2 more runs left for the month. My two highest distance months in 2013 have been July (with IMCDA in there) at 88.9 and April with 74.5. This means that August will be my second highest distance month in 2013 - and my first month since being cleared to run after breaking my toe.
Why all the running? Well some dummy (me) decided to sign up for the Ragnar Relay. It sounded fun - 6 months ago. Now that I'm a week out..... well, hopefully it is fun.
To get me ready for this event, my awesome/evil coach made me run up a Cat 3 hill on Saturday. Yesterday's workout notes said "AM - 1 hr hill run. PM - 40 min easy flatish run". Yeah. Super.
I mapped some stuff by my house but it really didn't fit the definition of "hilly". (I'm looking at you, Melissa, because I'm sure you'll say my neighborhood trail is hilly). My local run store has a Thurs night run club where they typically go and run up this geographic feature called "The Bluffs". Its basically a bluff (duh) that you run up and then around. I have yet to actually make it all the way around, either because of time constraints (most weeks) or because of hail and huge, scary lighting storms (last week - not cool). The Bluffs is really close to my office (we have showers and a locker room) and so I decided to make that the location of my morning hilly run. I should have brought my phone with me to take pics because it was soooo pretty. Also: my Garmin had a corrupt file and I had to do a master reset, so I lost my data. But if I had it, the elevation profile would have looked like this:
I was nice to myself and did a quick 10 min (or 5 min out and back?) run through the neighborhood. This was so my legs were nice and warm, because once you enter the park, you head straight up the hill. Also, it was dark and there are no lights in the park. 10 min was about right for some pre-dawn light to get going.
I was dreading this run but I actually really, really enjoyed it. It was really peaceful and it was fun watching the sun rise in the east and then seeing the sun light up the mountains. to the west, with you being above everything around you. I felt a bit off on the first part of the run, but by the time I hit the back of the Bluffs, I was nice and warm and running well. I ran up pretty much all of the hills, except for the switchbacks (those are really steep). I got to the end of the "up", otherwise known as the where you hit long downhill part of the trail that loops you back to the parking lot. I really didn't want to go allllll the way down and then back up again. And this was on the east side of the hill and the sun was at the annoying point on the horizon where your hat doesn't block it out. So I decided to turn around and run back the way I came.
In a nutshell: I was dreading this run but I got a really nice little endorphin high and some sightseeing.
5.5 miles in 1 hr for an 11:02 pace. WITH HILLS. Go me!
Also: I think I need trail running shoes because all of these little trail runs are starting to chew up my PureFlow2s. Time to get some PureGrit2s and see how those are.
Then I spent the day wanting to sleep under my desk. Not really. But sorta.
My afternoon 40 min run was in the heat of the day (90s?) and on my "flat" neighborhood trail, which is a gradual uphill as you go east. I usually walk this annoying hill that's about a mile out, but with the Garmin re-set, my screens and alarms were all off so I had no idea where my HR was. I decided to just go by feel and make myself run the whole time. The first mile was icky but once I got warmed up it was really nice. Except for the last 1/2 mile where my foot went totally numb because my calf is tight. My massage therapist was in a really bad car wreck a month ago and has a broken arm. Bad for him and bad for my calf. Boo. I managed 3.77 miles in 40 min, for a pace of 10:45. And it felt EASY.
Today my legs actually feel good. I think I'm ready for Ragnar :)