I haven’t run that far since March! I was proud. And especially happy because my leg felt good for the run, too! (I’ve been having some issues with my calf/ankle.) As you know, I skipped my long run last weekend and have been foam rolling, icing, and rocking my compression sleeve – and I think it’s really paid off. I also wore my compression sleeves (I figured I might as well wear both) for the run – I think it helped a lot. No calf pain or tightness at all!
Since I’m home in DC right now wedding venue shopping, I was able to run on my favorite – the C&O Canal . I’d forgotten how beautiful it is in fall!
Lots of families were out and about – and lots of cute dogs, too!
I stopped three times during the run – once at mile 9 to stretch my hip (it was feeling tight), once at around 3 miles in to take some pictures at my favorite spot where the trail opens up to beautiful views of the Potomac River.
Isn’t it gorgeous? So reflective!
And I also stopped briefly at the turn around point – mile 5 – to drink some water and eat my Hammer Gel. Not coordinated enough to juggle a water bottle and gel while still running (normally I would be wearing my Camel Bak for water so it would be easier)!
LOVE Hammer Gel. I have a super sensitive stomach when I run and this stuff has never bothered me. The espresso flavor is tasty and contains some caffeine, which is nice too. I don’t know if it’s just a placebo effect or what, but this stuff really helps energize me and keep me feeling good for the end of a run. I usually start fueling for runs 10 miles and over.
Even though I was running by myself and had no music or distractions in the form of a friend to talk to, this was an awesome run. I felt good the whole time – especially at the end – and totally could have done another 3.1. Feeling so much more confident for the Vegas Half Marathon in a few weeks now that I’ve gotten a solid long run in!
Mile 1: 9:20
Mile 2: 9:40
Mile 3: 9:25
Mile 4: 9:26
Mile 5: 9:37
Mile 6: 9:13
Mile 7: 9:23
Mile 8: 9:12
Mile 9: 9:13
Mile 10: 8:46
Overall time: 1:33:15. Average pace: 9:19. Success! You can see I felt a little sluggish at the beginning but picked it up for the second half of the run. I really love out and back runs because you can trick yourself into thinking you’re doing half the distance – I was thinking “All I have to do is run 5 miles, then turn around!” It makes it seem much more manageable.
The other thing that helped? Thinking about all my friends running the NYC Marathon! A big congrats to my grad school friend Steph and my blogger buddies Tina , Theodora , and Ashley – and to everyone else who ran the race yesterday (or another race this weekend)! So wish I had been there to cheer you all on!
Regarding the rest of my training , I think I’m going to do another shorter ish (5 or 6 miles?) run next weekend and then another 10 miler the following weekend. I don’t want to strain my calf and ankle again just when it’s starting to feel better! Following the 10 miler, I’ll have one more 6ish mile weekend run and then the next weekend is the race! I definitely am not planning on trying to set a new time record (PR) in this race – just want to have fun and see the sights in Vegas.
In other exciting news – my mom and I found a wedding venue yesterday!!! We actually LOVED the first one we saw and just decided to go for it. We put down a deposit and set a date: October 13, 2012. So exciting! Having found a venue makes it seem MUCH more real. Plus, I was getting scared about finding a good venue that wasn’t booked already – we got the second to last free weekend at this place! I can’t share details of where it is until after the wedding, but I think you guys will love it as much as we did. We’ll be having an outdoor ceremony and reception – with rain contingency plans, of course. Here’s hoping the weather is nice, though. We’re going to hire their on-site wedding coordinator to help with the details since my mom is super busy with work and I’m super busy with school/blog stuff (and not in town), so that will be great, too. Matt and I are going to go for a tasting with the caterers in December – excited! He wasn’t able to come up this weekend but didn’t mind not seeing it as long as my mom and I loved it – he’s more interested in making sure the music and the food are good.
After booking the place, we cancelled the rest of our venue viewing appointments and my mom and I decided to drive out into Virginia wine country to celebrate!
It was a beautiful day – we went to Bluemont Vineyard , which is up at the top of a big hill with stunning views of the valley below.
Such a fun and successful day – 10 mile run, finding a wedding venue, and wine tasting at a gorgeous vineyard! Amazing.
I’m playing hookie from school today and still up in DC because my mom and I thought we would need today to go see a few more venues – instead, now we just get to enjoy the day! (She took off from work in anticipation of venue-shopping.) We went for a great 2.8 mile walk in our super hilly neighborhood this morning and are now off to meet my grandmother for lunch.
Have a great Monday, friends! I’ll be flying back to Chapel Hill later tonight!