Thursday, May 20, 2010
May 19th, 2010 – 6 Mile Run
The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”
I was impressed with this run for two reasons. First, I really really really didn’t want to go. I was so tired when I got in from work. Second, I had planned to do a route I had never done before and the first 3 miles were to be completely uphill.
A few weeks ago, I had done a comprehensive search of all the parks in my area, so I could have a full menu of trail runs in case I wanted to mix things up a bit. I decided I would try one tonight. There was one I’ve been meaning to try since I did the search.
According to Map Quest, it was 2.98 miles away, within the very affluent neighborhood down the street and up the hill from my house. I had a long run (6.5 Miles) scheduled for tonight, so I figured, I would run the 3 miles up the hill, scope the park out for about a half mile and run the 3 miles back down the hill. Easy Peasy!
I had been putting off the hill work portion of my training because I really don’t like hill work. Who does, really? But I knew if I wanted to be fully prepared for this half marathon, hill training had to be a part of my regimen.
So I strapped on all my gear, swallowed one diet pill (which I do NOT recommend if there are any young girls reading my blog) because I knew I would need the ridiculous caffeine boost to even get the desire to start t his run.
According to MapMyRun.com, the ascent would start at the end of Mile 1. So I start the run out pretty easily and I’m on my 4 and 1 program because I know I am going to beat myself up pretty good on this run.
So, I’m at the end of Mile 1 and I’m looking up at this hill. The diet pill has kicked in, so I am ready to slay this beast!! Off I go!
Fewer than 2 minutes in, I’m wheezing like a Sleestak and my heart rate is up over 200. That kinda freaked me out, so I pulled off a little bit. Never have I ever seen my heart rate so high. I don’t know if it was the diet pills, the hill or both combined, but cardiac arrest just doesn’t sound like a good time.
According to “the experts”, my maximum heart rate is 183. Typically, I try to stick somewhere in my Target Heart Rate range, which is supposed to be 80% (147), when I’m doing a long run, so I won’t burn out before the finish. But this time was different. Because this hill was so steep, even a moderate jog had me up over 165. I decided that was OK, but I would slow down when I was in the 210 range.
So, I’m huffing up this hill, taking my scheduled breaks and marveling at how beautiful it is up there. These homes are in the multi-million dollar range and I would be jealous if I didn’t feel so sorry for them… If they are like everyone else in Southern California, they are *way* under water on these houses and will *never* be able to sell them for that they paid for them.
Aside from that, the grounds are beautifully kept and several times, I pass green belts whose only purpose seems to be for the relief of the obviously pampered pooches of these residents! There are bushes and bushes of the most lovely lavender and wild flowers, roses, ferns and slender young birches.
Aside from the fact that my heart is beating out of my chest and my muscles are burning with rage, I’m feeling pretty good. My knee is feeling good and my AT is feeling fine.
I am exhausted. I find myself at the 3 Mile mark. According to Map Quest, I should be standing in the park, but there is no park in sight. Sarah has had enough and I am losing daylight. Even though I’m fairly certain that these beautifully wide, well manicured streets will be well lit, even after dark, I give up the quest, turn around and start back down the hill.
Oh, but now!!! Now we’re going downhill! Now I plan to punish the pavement in retaliation of the misery it’s put me through. Sarah and I break into a sprint and it feels so good! I am aware that running downhill can be hard on my knees, all my joints, actually, so I am watching my form and making good choices, but I am owning this run!!!
It’s a beautiful day, the wind is in my hair, blood is racing though my veins and it feels good to be alive! Whew! In no time, we’ve hit mile 5 and we are at the bottom of the hill. We’ve blown passed other runners and even one running club, I think. I even passed a trailhead entry, which I plan to investigate later.
I still hate hill work. I still wish I didn’t have to do it. But this was a great workout and I’m feelin’ good! Sarah got home and immediately drank her entire bowl of water, then passed out on the floor. Tongue hanging out and the whole 9. She’ll forgive me later. I can’t worry about that right now. I’ve got diapers to change, stories to read and prayers to do.