However, in helping Diane with her marathon miles, I've racked up 34 miles already for March, and we're not even halfway through the month! What the what?? It's pretty crazy; I didn't set out to do this, but bumping up everything, from our usual 2.25 mile weekday runs to 4 or 5 miles, plus my running half of her long runs with her has meant that the miles have added up quickly.
Last Thursday, we ran 5 miles. Y'all. Five miles is normally a long run for me! But there we were, running it before work. I haven't run five miles in my neighborhood in forever (or maybe ever, I can't remember), so I figured out a route - just to give you an idea, here's my notes that I took as I was mapping it out on Map My Run:
I can't read my writing, either...
We had a good run, until suddenly we both ran out of energy - for whatever reason, neither of us thought to bring any fuel for this five miler, which goes to show you how differently we looked at a weekday run vs. a Saturday long run...on a Saturday, for 5 miles? We'd have used fuel for sure. But not on this run; we had our handheld water bottles because it was warm and muggy, but that was it. Lesson learned on that one. A secondary lesson for me would be to note that it's pretty challenging to run 5 miles and then stand up at the gift shop for the next four hours, but I survived.
On Saturday, Jeff and I woke up extra early to meet at 5:30 am to run 10 miles with Diane. As we were driving to the clubhouse, it started to rain. We got there and parked behind Diane's car and it started to pour. It was already warm and (obviously) humid and then with the rain? We quickly nixed the run and decided to do it the following day. That is the beauty of a smaller group of running people - you don't have to run if the weather is bad, especially if it's supposed to be clear the next day. So, we went home and back to bed; all three pets slept with Jeff which was pretty cute. He'd been out of town and I guess they missed him.
On Sunday, Jeff and I woke up extra EXTRA early, thanks to Daylight Savings Time starting overnight. I knew a cold front was supposed to have blown in, and it did - the temperature was 48 degrees, yay! I got dressed and went outside with Paco and immediately came back inside and changed into warmer clothes as it was windy and really cold. Even still, when Jeff and I walked outside to get in the car, he decided it was cold enough to need gloves and earwarmers, so he went back inside to get them for us and I'm really glad he did, because that wind was biting! I finally thought to check the "feels like" temperature, which said it was 42 degrees, with north winds of 16 mph with even stronger gusts.
We met up with Diane and took off running, hoping to warm up. It was cold and yes, super windy! We were about a mile into the run, going down a sidewalk, when I thought I saw a big pile of dirt (like, almost as tall as I am) ahead of us on the sidewalk. It was really dark, but sure enough, when we got closer that's what it was, so we had to do a little off-roading and step through the rain-soaked grass into the street to go around it. We kept running into these dumb dirt piles, which was a pain. Naturally this was on our out-and-back section, so we got to deal with them a second time. I think they are digging holes to put in street lights, which are much-needed on this stretch of roadway and will be wonderful to have, but running through a construction zone was not fun.
Finally, we were out of the dirt pile zone and into another mess - thanks to the rain, dirt runoff from more streetlight installation on our nice, wide-sidewalk road meant we had to be extra careful not to slip in the thick sludge. Between that and the wind, it was slower than usual running.
We hit the water stop at mile 4.5 and I refilled my water bottle and added more Tailwind. Aside from about 6 or 8 Sports Beans eaten at mile 3, this was all the fuel I used for the entire 10 mile run, and it worked out really well. Next week I'm going to try running with only Tailwind and see how that goes.
We finally got to the closed road, where we could run right down the middle of it without worrying about vehicles. It was great, except that the wind kicked up plus I guess with no houses or trees around us, we just felt the wind more, so those miles on that road were rough. At one point we were running on a slight incline, fully into the strong winds, and I'll be honest, I just wanted to turn around and go home. But I think we were at mile 8.5, and it would have been silly to quit so close to the finish, so I kept going. Jeff said something along the lines of "I think Shelley's had it - she's stopped talking" and he was right. Dang that wind! Even Diane later said that this run felt harder than her 16 miler the week before, so it wasn't just me.
Once we were back at the clubhouse, we quickly changed into warm, dry clothes and zipped over to Blue Baker, where Patrick, our favorite counter-guy, was working on learning our names - last week, we discovered that he refers to us as "pumpkin muffin" (Cary), "diet Coke" (Diane), "extra butter" (Karen) and so on. Not sure what I was (probably "bacon on the side") but it was really funny. As usual, my eyes were bigger than my stomach - here's what I ordered:
Bacon (on the side, LOL), a blueberry scone, and a cranberry walnut muffin, with lots of coffee.
But here's what I brought home for later:
After four miles, I could have devoured everything, but my stomach shuts down once I hit the longer miles.
The muffin and scone were good the next morning, too. This Saturday has Diane running her longest run yet - 18 miles! I will be with her for part of those miles, but I'm not sure how many just yet.