6 Miles

13 Dec

December has been busy busy. I haven’t even posted about  my six mile run yet, and that was almost a week ago! Nor have I written thank you notes to my relatives for the birthday presents they sent me, and that was almost two weeks ago! I was given three months (!!!) of Pure Barre by my parents for my birthday and I’ve only been able to squeeze in three sessions since then. There have just been so many holiday events that I felt obligated to get to, and every relative/coworker/friend of mine seems to have a December birthday that needs celebrating.

So, last week we added a mile to the long run. I missed the second five-miler the week before, so I had very fresh legs. Bonuses from the six-miler:

(1) An aid station was set up at the half-way point. This. was. awesome. Sort of? Apparently I don’t know how to do them right. It was nice to be able to tell myself “just a little bit further and you can drink some water.” The problem was that our coach cautioned us to take tiny sips. Was I supposed to walk with my water and sip? Stand around and sip? I don’t know. It seemed to be taking up a lot of time. I walked with my water for a minute and took some tiny sips, then gulped the rest and started running again.

(2) We did a loop. Up until this run, we’ve been running out and back, which has kind of been no fun. Loops are always better, I think. At one point I thought “Man this sucks, but I have no where to go but forward.”

One nice thing was that we got to run through campus. It made me miss my student days. So far every long run day has had the most gorgeous weather. It will be bitterly cold or rainy all week and then, like magic, long run day is the perfect temp with a slight overcast and nice breeze. Awesome. I tried to keep the girl ahead of me in sight at all times. I don’t wear a watch or use an app on these long runs, so my pacing usually comes down to guess-work. At one point the girl I was trying to keep in sight stopped to walk. “Almost to the water station, you’ve got this!” I yelled to her as I passed by. She didn’t answer, so I don’t know if I was encouraging, or made her want to kill me. She passed me again after the water station and stayed ahead of me the rest of the way. This was good, because I didn’t really know the route we were taking. At one point she got a little far ahead, and I thought, “Oh no. I won’t know where to go!” But I got her back in my vision.

I had several people passing me during the second-to-last mile. I hate being passed, but not enough to go any faster. 🙂 The last mile was a steady incline for about 80% of the way. That hill tried to kill me, and I was mad at it. It got the better of another girl in front of me, who stopped to walk. I said, “You’ve got this! Just a little bit further and then we’re done!” Again, no answer, so I don’t know if she appreciated the encouragement or wanted to punch me. I tried to think how I would feel if someone yelled that to me and then decided that my appreciation/hatred scale would completely depend on my mood. I needed to say that out loud for myself, just as much as for her, though, because I was so very mad at that hill. She did start running again a little bit after that, so I am going to tell myself I was encouraging.

The last little bit was back down hill to where we started. I came in second-to-last of the people who didn’t stop to walk. I was stretched and ready to go before anybody else crossed the “finish” line. I felt proud of myself for running that far. Six miles is a distance I’ve never seen before. I did hate doing it for about half of the way, though. It’s scary to think that the half marathon will be more than double that distance!

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