***Well, now wait a minute, I didn't exactly just come up with this idea out of nowhere. As I was reading blogs last week, I saw that Stephanie over at Thorns Have Roses put up a post about running her first 7:40 mile, and she was so excited! And, I was pretty excited for her! Since reading that, I've been wondering to myself just how fast I might be able to run a mile as well. So, thanks Stephanie, for planting that little seed in my brain!***
At five minutes into my run, I decided to just go for it. And...I actually DID IT! Honestly, it didn't feel as hard as I thought it would. I was pretty pumped.
After that, I dropped down to the 8:34 pace for 9 minutes, and then thought...
"wonder if I could do it again?"
So...I DID! Not just one, but TWO 8 minute miles in the same run!! But, let me say, the second one did NOT feel as easy as the first. By the end of it, I was feeling pretty wiped out. And, at that point, I still had 30 minutes left in my run. Uh oh. I started to wonder if I might have just made a mistake. I definitely wanted to finish out my 60 minutes, and I really didn't want to take my pace any slower than the 8:34 I was originally planning on. I kept thinking...
Dig deep, you've got this.
(I have to thank Amanda at Runninghood for this. She talked recently about mantras and how they can get you through the tough stuff. Thanks, Amanda!)
At about 45 minutes into my run, things were getting a little sketchy. I was tired. My legs were hurting. I could tell my form was getting sloppy. Did I mention I was tired?
So, at this point, I said to my body
(because I wanted to make sure it was listening and listening good)
"You WILL obey me!"
To which my body replied,
I'm not exactly sure what happened for the next 5-10 minutes. You know when a run starts to get really hard and you start thinking of all the things you can tell yourself/visualize to get you through it? Well, when it gets to this point for me, my brain just starts to throw any piece of random crap it can think of at me. Nothing necessarily motivational or inspirational, just random crap. I think it starts to realized that the body is winning, freaks out and goes into some sort of strange overdrive. Again, nothing helpful. Just random crap. Almost like a "my life flashing before my eyes" kind of thing. Memories of going down the slide in preschool. (Huh?) Thoughts of a certain favorite parking spot at Walmart. (What??) An odd replay of an Air Supply song. (I don't even like Air Supply!!)
Eventually, I got it together and managed to push through the last 20 minutes at my 8:34 pace. Phew! That was dicey for a little while there...I ended up going 6.99 miles. I even sped up the last 30 seconds when I saw that I might make 7 miles, but it just wasn't meant to be. But, I ended up feeling really happy with what I accomplished today. I haven't run a 7-miler since before Thanksgiving, and I definitely didn't do it in an hour. And, I ran my first (and second!) 8 minute mile. Pretty good day on the running front.
Here's a great song and one I listened to during my run today:
P.S. They took the '30 minute limit' stickers off of two of the treadmills at the gym, so I won't have to feel *guilty* about my longer-than-30-minute runs now. Yippee!