Friday I had to work late and the sun was already going down.
Saturday I decided to head to Otsiningo Park for my long run. Unfortunately, I had to drive there. I don’t like the idea of driving to someplace to go for a run, but there’s no safe way to run to the park. So I drove. I wanted to run at least eight miles. There are trails all over the park and if I do enough loops, I can easily rack up some distance. It was cold, but not too bad. I had three layers on, but had left my gloves at home. My hands were very cold for the first mile, but sweating by mile two. At mile eight, my legs felt fine so I decided to push for nine. At exactly the nine mile point, I got a terrible side stitch. I have been plagued by these things since I was a teenager. I tried to breathe deep and change my stride, but nothing worked. Eventually I stopped and stretched and the pain went away. I was about a mile from where I had parked and decided to run the rest of the way. When the side stitch returned, I took that as a sign that I should stop. My total mileage was 10.1. Woohoo! A new distance record. The longest I had ever run was 8.2.
The park is a really nice place for running. There were a few other runners, some walkers, one cold looking bicycler, and lots of pretty dogs to look at. I will probably make this my long run course until I get totally bored with it. The only problem is a lack of hills so I will have to do my cemetery run, which is nothing but steep hills, to keep my hill muscles in shape.
When I got home, I downloaded the data from my watch. I hadn’t been trying to run fast at all, just a leisurely pace. I was happy to see that I had run a very good time for the first three miles and had an average pace of 9:29 for the entire course.
I am signed up to run a half marathon in May. Due to the snow and cold weather, I am way behind in my training. Or so I thought. Yesterday’s run has given me a huge boost of confidence. Not only should I be ready for May, but I might actually run the entire 13.1 miles with a decent time.
I have read that most runners can run farther than they think. I guess it’s true.
5.97 miles, 58:00 minutes, 9:43 pace
10.18 miles, 1:36:27 minutes, 9:29 pace