~5.8 miles; ~50 min; à8:36/mile
Well, I don't know what to say. It was a slower overall pace. I felt slow during the majority of the run. On the up side, I was able to run the whole distance. I think that the most difficult spot was at about mile 3, more or less. I went out with no water but Becky dropped me off and then came back out with some water and waited for me at about the 3-mile point. I stopped for a few minutes to drink it and pour it on myself. Of course, I am not subtracting that time from the overall run time but if I did the pace could be closer to 8 min/mile. I don't know, I don't think that the pace really matters today. Next Sunday, when I have a race – then it will matter. Today, my main reason for running was just to go over 5 miles so that I could get a better feel for the distance I will be running next week.
A few observations from this evening's run:
I felt good for the last mile. I think that it was probably my fastest mile as well.
My feet felt the heaviest at about the 5-mile mark. I was keenly aware of this fact and I consciously worked on picking my knees up and keeping my arms involved. I was running in a basically flat area but approaching the 5-mile mark of today's run there is a slight rise as the road comes up to a railroad crossing. I don't think that that alone was why my feet were so heavy feeling but it could be part of it.
I saw a big brown hawk on a light post in the first mile. It flew off when I went past.
At about mile 4 a sparrow or some other small common bird flew along next to me for about 4 or 5 seconds. I enjoyed the company.
There are a lot of these weeds with a little yellow flower with a red center. I was happy to see them.
Near mile 3, I saw what looked like a very old piece of a dead armadillo. I don't have any idea how long it has actually been there. I was a little surprised by the lack of wild life other than birds. I would like to have seen a live armadillo. Then my run might have taken much longer.
I think that I need new shoes soon. It will have to wait until I can afford them but everywhere I read suggests that running shoes are only really good for 400 to 500 miles. I got the pair that I have now around Christmas or my birthday last year and I ran a few times a week almost every week since then.
I developed some pretty big blisters on my left foot on Friday's run. Yeah, I was really noticing them this evening. I drained them so that they would dry out but it takes a couple of runs for the skin to thicken up and make calluses (which is what I want here). Somebody, say your prayers to the callus gods to get to work so that this running stuff starts to feel better.
Hmm, what else? Not much. Like I said earlier – I felt really good in the last mile. I ended strong. It bothers me a little that my pace doesn't seem very consistent on a run like tonight's but I think that in a race (next week) I will be able to work off the runners around me a lot more. I am not worried at all about going out too slow next week. I tend to start too fast in races and it takes some concentration for me to not sprint out with the much faster runners. I was a middle distance runner (400 & 800m) in high school and that combined with the energy of standing at a starting line with 400+ other runners usually means about a 6:00 to a 6:30 first mile for me. I am okay with that, actually. I just hope that my pace will level out (without slowing significantly) as I get more used to running further and more often.
Anyway, the weather was nice. It was not windy. It was about 85 degrees when I left. Tomorrow, I think that I will do a shorter work out at the track and try to keep my mile time under 7 minutes each mile. It is supposed to be about 92 and sunny tomorrow. I like running in the sun. It just feels good to me. I would rather deal with the heat than the cold any day.