Saturday, May 2, 2009

We've Got Hills

Last night I went out to my dad and step-mom's house in New Jersey. They live in a pretty rural area, so I thought I would go for my "long" run of the week this morning. I put long in quotes because at this point, I'm not exactly sure how far long should be. Before I came out here, I had done some research using Google pedometer and found a route that was about 5.7 miles. I figured with some walking at the beginning and end to warm-up and cool-down, that'd I'd end up running about 5 miles total, which seemed like a good starting place given that I haven't really been running a lot recently.

Since I had to relinquish my new orthotics and I can't wear my new running shoes (they sent the inserts for those shoes along with the orthotics to make sure they come back the correct length), I decided that I would wear my old shoes and my old orthotics. I figured that they would be more supportive even if they're not 100% perfect.

I started out at 6:45 this morning after getting the required parental dose of "be careful" warnings. I walked for 5 minutes and went 0.35 miles. Then I started running. It was a little cool when I left their house (about 55) so I was wearing shorts, a short-sleeved shirt and a light jacket. While I was walking I was glad I had the jacket, but as soon as I started running, I was too hot and just tied it around my waist.

Around the time that I reached 2 miles running, I started to get a bit winded and decided to just walk for 20 seconds. I ended up taking 4 breaks of 20 seconds each, so I walked a total of 1:20 during the run. I would say in the minute leading up to each of the breaks, I was feeling bad about being a little tired, but as soon as I started up again I felt much better, so it was probably the right decision to help me push through mentally.

The other thing that isn't so clear when you're using the internet to plan routes is the topography! Or maybe I just wasn't looking at that feature. Having to run up hills isn't really that fun. And, I know you're going to think I'm making this up, but I really didn't get to run down the hills I ran up, I just kept going up, which made the whole thing less fun.

The total distance running was 5.09 miles, which I completed in 55:31 (10:54 pace). I'm not thrilled with this pace, and I know that I could do better than that, but I have to start somewhere, right? I also knew starting out that my goal was going to be to finish the run and not to push myself too hard.

I finished up with a 0.34 mile walk back to the house (which took 6 minutes). All in all, I was out for 66 minutes and went a total distance of 5.78 miles. After I had been running for about 35 minutes, I did get a small cramp in my side, but I knew if I just kept plodding along that I'd get through it. It's always surprising to me how much of this working out stuff is mental and telling yourself "I can do it". Or at least that's how it is for me. And, oddly enough, once I've told myself that I can, I have been able to keep going!

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