Getting to see a beautiful pink sunrise is a nice perk of a long run - we saw this as we neared mile 5 on Saturday morning. Photo credit goes to CC - she stopped to take the picture while Loretta and I kept chugging up the hill.
I'll be honest - I was not looking forward to running 8 miles on Saturday. Traditionally, 8 miles is when the hurting begins, both during and after the run. But, I did the old "fake it til you make it" thing and pretended it was going to be great, and you know what? It wasn't bad. There were several long slog hills on this route, including my personal nemesis, Harvey Hill, which I've hated doing for years now. However, CC had found a video that talked about how to do hills without getting tired, so we tried to concentrate on doing them this way. Here's the link, but basically we focused on standing up straight, looking ahead (vs at the ground, which is easy to do when you're running up a hill), taking short, choppy steps, and keeping our feet under our bodies instead of taking longer strides. We reached the top of Harvey Hill and amazingly, we all felt good! And this was at mile 5, so it's not like we were on fresh legs at that point.
We had a nice downhill after that, and then a couple more hills, including one where we have usually lost Loretta...it's always toward the end of the run, and it's a bear. I get to run it every Thursday with Cary, so I'm more used to it, but normally Loretta is cussing and lagging on that one. Well, not this time! She stayed right with us, and, not that we care, because cussing goes very naturally with long runs, Loretta didn't even swear! Except for mile 2, that was our fastest mile of the day, as well!
I was surprised to see my old trainer's van in the parking lot of the park when we finished our run - Brad had just led a group in a workout there. It was nice to see him and it felt like I came full circle, as I started running when I was working out with his group, and even ran my first mile there...nearly six years ago to the day!
Andi, Cristy, Cary, Julia and Casey
I took this shot of my friends relaxing after their run. But once I uploaded my pictures, I realized I caught Julia in the process of doing a "here, smell this, it's gross" thing...she'd bought a bottle of Lime Cucumber Gatorade, and it was awful. I thought it smelled like dirt; others likened it to something you should be putting on your body, like lotion, instead of trying to drink it.
We had breakfast tacos at the park, but of course we had to go to Blue Baker anyway. Second breakfast sounds perfectly normal after running 8 miles, right? Jeff and I were in a cinnamon mood:
We split a cinnamon roll and a cinnamon twist, YUM!
This girl ran her first 8 miler and celebrated with chocolate milk and a breakfast croissant!
Just to show you where my mind always goes, when we finished our 8 mile run on Saturday, CC said something about Eminem and I thought she was talking about the candy M&M's. Oh, that movie 8 Mile. Oh, Eminem the person, not the candy. Oh. And shoot, I just realized that M&M's would have been appropriate fuel for that run! Maybe next time...