Yesterday I woke up early to make sure I had enough time to get my 18 miles in and not have to rush through them. The morning was beautiful. The grass was sparkling from the frost on it and the air was clean and refreshing. The sun was shining which felt great after the rain we had the day before.
I set out for an out and back with my fuel belt filled with water and tri-berry nuun (my new fav must have on my long runs).
My goal was to stay around a 9:20-30 pace for the first half of the run then speed up to around a 9 min mile for the last half.
I averaged about a 9:21 pace for the first 9 miles. This pace felt good and like I could have finished the entire 18 miles feeling good.
I speed up for the last half and my splits were:
9:20 (had to slow down cause I had to use the restroom and knew there was one coming up soon)
9:00 (stopped for a little bit to take a pic of the giraffe)
My legs started feeling fatigued at mile 15 but it's actually what I wanted to feel as weird as that might sound. I wanted to challenge my muscles and feel the fatigue they would feel towards the last few miles of a marathon. I also pushed it the last mile so I could finish strong. It was hard to give it that kick at the end but I pushed through it and imagined myself at the end of my marathon with the finish line in sight. I looked down at my garmin and saw it under an 8 min pace a few times which gave me a boost.
Finish time was 2:43:29 9:04 min/mi pace.
Overall I felt challenged, but it felt great that I could actually sustain a pace under 9 min with my legs feeling fatigued. Now could I do that for another 8.2 miles? Right now probably not. But I do think I could hold a pace somewhere between 9:00-9:30.
This week is a step back week with a long run of 13 miles. I'll take that one at an easy, comfortable pace cause I have a 20 miler the weekend after!
Here's a pic of the giraffe I saw.
|There's something yummy on the tree I must eat it.|
Don't judge me I like to run to her music :) I think I played it about 4 times during miles 14 and 15 when my pace sped up and again the last mile of my run. That song makes me want to dance! I think I was bobbing my head and trying not to throw my hands up in the air. But I was singing out loud a little :)