Friday, November 30, 2012

Dumb Cat Story and Fastest 5K Split EVER!

So I've been doing a lot of speedwork, following a 5K plan out of Runner's World, because I wanted to get my speed up a little bit.  The last week has included some big gains as I clocked a 7:47 mile the other day, but the weather and the darkness has been troublesome.  While I've done all the speedwork outside, I admit to chickening out and doing some of the "long slow" runs indoors by means of riding my bike on the trainer.

I love my bike.  Is it really cheating on the run to ride your bike for an hour and a half instead?  I'm clocking some respectable mileage indoors this year...

Today, the plan called for a 6-7 mile run.  I woke up completely blue and lonesome.  And really mad.  My demon cats had come downstairs in the middle of the night.  At one point, I was jolted out of a sound sleep by a light bonk on the head, followed by the ghostly fluttering of something large and white.

It was not a ghost.  It was my curtains which hang behind my headboard all artistic-like.  They had somehow ripped them off the wall, and also ripped the curtain rod down!  Origami was perched on the headboard, twitching his tushy like he was an actual hunter.  He then launched himself at his brother, who was hiding at my feet.

I kicked and squirmed and yelled until they both jumped off and ran away, and then dropped back to sleep wondering why I had agreed to cats and not a dog in the first place...

So I was really cranky when I woke up (for the second time) this morning.

I decided to head down to the Valley River Center access point to the river paths.  Those are some lovely flat paths, great for a nice fast run if you are in that mood.  I hadn't run the Valley River Center section in a long time, so I figured it might be a nice change of pace.  I locked my car, layered up with a beenie, arm warmers, tights, and a jacket, and went out for a loosen-up stroll.  I was a little over-layered, evidenced by my stripping off arm warmers and jacket within the first mile.

As I got started, while my iPod was playing some awesome songs, my legs and gut were just not  feeling it.  My left hamstring has been threatening to bug me with some tightness and my feet were leaden and my legs felt like sandbags.  So I gave it half a mile, and then decided to kick it up a bit and just put in a 5K sufferfest and see how it went.

It was perhaps the most miserable run I've had in ages. I certainly got the price of admission out of that sufferfest. I kept feeling like I could push it just a little more if I only had the energy and willpower or was 10 pounds lighter or SOMETHING.  I am clearly the worst runner ever.  Why do I do this?  Why was I not riding my bike, like all the other sensible people out there?  I was totally going to quit and ride my bike for the rest of my life.  I just felt like I was running underwater and couldn't MOVE.

At the 3-ish mile mark, I checked my phone to see how my time was, figuring I'd be clocking a slow-and-miserable time.  I strongly considered a little crying.  Or at least whining.

I was totally shocked to see that my time had just clicked into 25 minutes.  I thought it must be a mistake, so I checked my watch, which concurred.  I'd only been out there just over 25 minutes, and was almost at 5K.  So I pushed it a little harder... to come in at a 5K split time of 25:55.

Oh, yeah.

After that, I decided to finish out the 6 miles.  My second split was definitely longer, but I don't know exactly how long.  Sometime in there, I accidentally turned off my GPS app, so I don't even have evidence of this fantastic run time!

That sure lifted my mood for the rest of the day.  I also saw four separate rainbows today, three from my back deck.  So it was  a very pretty day, AND I got my long run in before the steady afternoon rain started.

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