Okay, so I might not have done my Friday run. I did go for a walk. Whatever. That's not the point. Today we hit 8 miles! I wasn't entirely sure I was up for it, but apparently I was. Here's how it went down.
At 7:09am my cell phone rang, waking me up. I looked at the clock. "Hmm," I thought to myself, "it's about time to be getting up. What day is this? Wait...oh, it's Saturday. Crap!" The ringing phone meant that Meg was outside my house to pick me up for our long run. It would seem that I had turned my alarm clock off. I ran downstairs, got the phone and told her I'd be right out, I needed about 2 minutes. I ran back upstairs, quickly brushed my teeth, ran a brush through my hair, grabbed a hair band, threw running clothes on, ran downstairs, grabbed a clean pair of socks from my car (I just bought new ones at Body & Sole), threw a Diet Coke, my wallet, keys and cell phone into my purse, grabbed the box of granola, and ran out the front door barefoot. I don't think it was much more than 2-3 minutes. I put on my socks and shoes in the car then proceeded to eat breakfast. I just had to laugh at myself. I'm ridiculous. I also had to laugh because Meg can't eat or drink even remotely near a run, and here I was drinking my Diet Coke and eating granola on the way to Mahomet (where we run).
So we rolled up to Lake of the Woods in Mahomet. A handful of us (Jaymie and Randy, Allison, Meg and me, Brett, Kevin the new guy, and Paula the alumni) gathered, but no coach. We waited about 20 minutes then decided to start running. Meg and I started off down the trail together. We ran 1.2 miles down, turned around and ran 1.2 miles back to where we started. Just as we were approaching the picnic tables we saw Vicki, our coach. She had gotten lost and ended up parking at the other end of the park. She felt so bad. She asked us to take her car key and get out the Powerade at the other end once we got there. So we crossed the road and carried on, about another 2.1 miles to her car (cumulative = about 4.5).
For the next mile Meg and I ran with and talked to Allison. Allison ran a marathon 2 years ago and is training for another. She's a little bit faster than we are, so it's a push to keep up. But we were talking and carrying on and having a good time, so I hardly noticed the mile go by. It helped so much! By the time it was clear that we couldn't keep up any more, we were at 5.5 miles. At that point, I knew I could handle another 2.5--I was over the hump of the run.
To make the run eight miles we added a loop around one side of a fishing lake. It was a gorgeous morning. Running by the lake was a real treat. Except for the fishing pole I almost ran into. A man had it resting on the guard rail. But I missed it and carried on.
We got back to the picnic tables in just over an hour, including the several breaks we took for water and unloading Vickie's car. Unfortunately, we hadn't gone far enough around the lake, so we realized we hadn't quite done 8 miles. Because we're compulsive overachievers, Allison, Meg and I took off to run another half mile. It seemed like nothing! The guy (who is quite a character) who recently said his goal is to run the race with Meg and me never caught up to us today, and didn't finish out the eight miles (he missed the lake loop all together). It's flattering to be someone's goal pace!
Over all, it was a tiring run but a good one. I'm definitely sore and will be hurting in the morning. More importantly though, I now know that I can run 8 miles. This whole half-marathon idea is beginning to sound feasible.