I wish I ran at her pace, because I would have LOVED some company on a 3 1/2 hour run, but she's much faster than me. So I knew I'd be running alone this time. I've only run this far twice before, so I was super nervous about it. Last night, I plugged in my Garmin to charge, plugged in my iPod, laid out my running clothes, filled my water bottle and stuck it in the fridge--got everything ready so the morning wouldn't be hectic.
When I woke up, I could hear the patter of rain on the windows. Bummer.
I mapped out a different route today, because I was hoping I'd run into Renee a couple of times, and the new scenery would hopefully make it go by faster. I grabbed an extra shirt and pair of socks to throw in the car, in case the rain really didn't let up. I drove to the public parking lot where I was going to do three out-and-backs from my car--six miles, then eight miles in the opposite direction, then six miles.
I sat in the car for a couple of minutes, really not wanting to get out. The rain wasn't just a drizzle; it was coming down pretty hard. Finally, I got out and started running. The first two miles was along a busy road (I was on the sidewalk). Then I cut across to go two miles around a large park. It was completely empty, which was unusual (and totally creepy). The path is gravel, and it goes right up against the woods, and then cuts across by some soccer fields, and then goes around a pond, and then goes back out to the busy road.
I was really nervous to be there all alone, because if a creeper pulled into the park, I would be trapped in the back near the woods, basically. Thankfully, all the creepers were hiding from the rain this morning, and I didn't run into anyone. The rain was a total downpour the entire time I was at the park. Renee sent me a text when I was 3.5 miles in and said she was just heading out.
My iPod headphones were soaking wet and they stopped working, so I put them in my pocket. Normally, I don't use my iPod unless I'm doing a really long run, and usually then I only use it for the first half or so. But today, I was looking forward to listening to a podcast, and the headphones quit working. I stopped at the car at mile six in order to throw my iPod in there, and also to see if I had a plastic bag to wrap my phone with. Thankfully, there was a plastic grocery bag in the car, so I tore off a big chunk of it and wrapped my phone before putting it back in my little belt pouch.
I started the eight-mile out-and-back from the car, which went in the opposite direction, through the State Park, and back. At mile nine, I ate my first GU. I was starting to feel kind of sluggish, so I hoped it would pick me up a little. The State Park is extremely boring to run (the entire trail looks the same), so I wanted to get it done. I worked on drinking my Gatorade so that I could refill when I got back to the car.
I didn't run into a single soul in the park, which is unusual. But it was still raining, of course, so naturally everyone was inside! When I got back to the car, I HAD to change my socks. My feet were totally soaked, and I could even hear a "squish" noise with each step I took. So I refilled my water bottle, and took of my sopping wet socks. My feet were all wrinkled from being so wet:
A mile and a half later, I ran into Renee. I could see her pink Women Rock MN jacket coming toward me. She was all perky and feeling great at that point--she asked how far I'd gone, and I said 15.6. She said she had gone 15.3... so she was CRUISING. She said her pace was 8:48/mi. That's super fast for doing a 20-mile run. We chatted for a minute, then headed off in opposite directions.
When I got to the park, I was relieved to be running on the gravel--it was much softer than the concrete sidewalks and the asphalt trail through the State Park. My legs didn't feel so achy when I was running on the gravel, but I still had to stop and stretch my legs a couple of times.
Finally... FINALLY... the car was in sight! I picked up the pace the last mile a little, even though my legs were super tired, and was so relieved to make it back to the car.
Speaking of WW, I'm actually kind of liking the program this time around. It's nice to do something different. And I hate to admit it, but I think paying the money for the online program has kept me on track ;) I so badly wanted to binge yesterday, but I kept thinking about the money I paid to try this program, so I didn't do it. If there is one thing I can't stand, it's wasting perfectly good money! ;)
The winner of the giveaway for Pete Thomas's book, "Lose It Fast, Lose It Forever" is: