I cannot believe that I’ve completed Week 8. Only one week until graduation!
I ran outside today, for the first time since I did the 5K a month ago. I had been trying to run outside once a week, but between vacation and illness, treadmill runs were all I could manage and/or work into my schedule.
Today was very different experience. The weather was beautiful – sunny, but not too hot, with a slight breeze. This was the first outdoor run since I stopped doing intervals, which I didn’t realize until just now. I started out strong; I had a little trouble with my pace, but by the second song, I was in a groove. There were a lot of people out walking this morning and a few people biking with kids, but no one else was running. I don’t know how to explain it, but today I really felt like a runner. I wasn’t self-conscious at all. I felt like my feet were springing back with each step. Somehow, it just seemed perfectly natural.
The past few times I’ve run outside, I just went half the time and then turned around. However, there’s a loop through town that is very popular with walkers and joggers. So today, I decided to do the whole loop. I’d never measured it, but I kind of thought it would be about 3 miles. I figured if I finished my 28-minute run, I could just walk the rest of the way and get in a little extra exercise.
Now, I am a really bad judge of distance – always have been. I realized when I hit the 14-minute mark, that I was way past halfway around the loop. I started going through various options in my head. One – I could just continue around the loop for a few minutes, then turn back toward the car. Two – I could take off in a different direction for a few minutes, then turn back toward the car. I wasn’t excited about either of these options. Then I started thinking, hey, I could stop at the car and drink some water. My throat immediately started to get dry. When I got to the last bit of the loop, it was like my car was a homing beacon pulling me in. All I could think was “almost there, almost there.”
The next thing I knew, I was sitting in the car, drinking water and driving away! And I still had 6 minutes to go to hit 28 minutes! However, I did have the presence of mind to pause the Nike + program, which told me that I had gone 2.3 miles. I’d been hitting about 2.3 miles in the full 28-minute run (plus warm-up) on days 1 and 2 (yes, I run SLOOOWW). Apparently, my pace was quite a bit faster than what I’d been doing on the treadmill.
It’s a four or five minute drive to my house from the rec center, and by the time I got home, I thought, hey why not do the rest of the 28-minutes on the treadmill, so I did. Then I did 12 minutes of Ab Jam and 30 minutes of Power Yoga.
So, in a way, I wimped out on the run, because I didn’t do the whole 28-minutes outside, but I did do the distance and then ran some more. I’m going to call it a success.