Lots of Randomness
I am 5 weeks out from my marathon!! That is really close! My training partner raced an out of town half marathon this morning and couldn't run with me, so since I was on my own I decided to run my own half marathon:) You just could not order a more perfect day for running. It was crystal clear blue skies, 40 degrees and gorgeous outside when I left a little before 8am. The leaves are turning brilliant shades of red and orange, and I tried so hard to look around and just soak up the beauty of the day. I do most of my runs very early in the mornings these days, and don't realize what all I have been missing by running in the dark! It doesn't get light here until close to 7am, and we are usually running around 5 or 5:30am and finish up around 8. Plus, when I am with my partner and we are jabbering on, I forget to pay attention to the pretty surroundings. I put my ipod in this morning and just ran. I tried to start off slow and was aiming for 10 minute miles, but I can never seem to do that when I am alone. After a few miles of 9:30 pace I decided I would just hang in there and see if I could hold it. I finished the 13.1 miles in a little over 2:03, which is my second fastest half marathon time ever!! It was a 9:27 average mile pace, and I ran faster during the second half than the first. I felt great the whole time, and it went pretty fast. I need to do these solo runs every once in a while, but I really do enjoy talking for hours and being with a friend:)
Our second 20 mile run is this coming weekend, and then we start to taper for the race. I think that will leave me with 18, 12, and 8 mile runs left for my long runs, which isn't bad at all! I am getting excited and anxious to see what I can pull off this second time around. All of the race predictor charts seem to think I should be able to run a 4:05 marathon, but I am thinking that 4:20 is a bit more realistic for me. I faded a lot more than I wanted to in Little Rock, but I am hoping that was just due to the crazy hills and my minimal training base. I cannot believe how much I have enjoyed this marathon training cycle:) I am having a lot of fun running and really enjoying seeing my times come down. My shoes are getting towards the end of their life, so I am planning to buy some new ones to break in over the next few weeks to wear for the race.
I guess I am still crazy since I am already planning my next races after this marathon is over:) I am really wanting to run the half marathon in Little Rock in March. My running partner and I are out of our minds and are throwing around the idea of a half ironman for next summer! I am really trying to decide if I am willing to commit to that kind of intense 6 months of training as soon as this marathon is over. Silas is on board with whatever I decide, so we will see:) I am so much happier since I starting running. I went way too many years without any athletic competition in my life, and I can't tell you how much fun I am having! I am so thankful for the talents God has blessed me with, and am so happy to be using them again at this phase in my life:)