Week 3 of marathon training for the 2009 White Rock Marathon is coming to a close. It has been a very successful week of running and I am even more amped than ever to hit week 4 running strong.
Today was my long run of the week. I met up with the OKC Running Club, the LandRunners, this morning at 6:30 for my run. They had scheduled a 10-mile run for those training for the Route 66 Tulsa Marathon, but since I am 3 weeks behind their schedule, I opted for 7 miles instead. The morning alarm came very early this morning, but the reward of great weather and plenty of good company was well worth the effort of getting out of bed. I woke up about 5:15 this morning and had my usual whole-wheat bagel with peanut butter and jelly. I also threw in a banana for good measure. I strapped on the trusty heart-rate monitor, laced up, and out the door I went.
Stanley Draper is a small lake on the southeast side of OKC and is about a 20-minute drive from my house. The temperature gauge on my car showed a ridiculously comfortable 64 degrees when I got in this morning. The cool, crisp breeze felt great as I drove with the windows down, singing along to Sugarland and pumping myself up for the run ahead of me. My legs felt great. I was alert. I was excited.
I pulled up to the marina and started my stretches as the cars kept pulling up. All in all, I would say there was a group of 50 or so runners and everyone seemed in good spirits due to the weather. We got the usual pre-run instructional and were warned of the hilly nature of the course and off we went. They were not lying about the hills either. The first 2 miles of the run were gentle, long hills that provided a good warm-up to the steep, short hills that waited around miles 3 and 4. It was my first real experience with running long and hills at the same time so it was a good experience. I ended up really enjoying the challenge and plan on making another trip out there in the future. I settled into a decent pace with another girl in the group and coasted through the 7 miles pretty easily which was a great sign. This is my longest run post-injury so I am making little strides every week. I am excited to tackle another long run next weekend. The long runs are my favorites. I love the way I feel after I finish. The mid-week runs are just grueling maintenance for me. I think I will begin to enjoy those more as the weather continues to moderate and I am able to run outside more often. A great start to the weekend! I will get in some cross-training tomorrow and then do it all over again after resting on Monday.
No big plans this evening. I am already pretty tired so pretty sure I will be doing something low-key. I am planning on going to my parent's house tomorrow to see my little brother if he gets released from the hospital. He recently got a pretty nasty staph infection and has been in the hospital for a few days. They think it's getting better, but they are still concerned. I know he is more annoyed than anything, but he needs to take it easy and get healthy. Other than that, the weekend is pretty tame. The calm before the storm. This time next weekend I will either be celebrating a great Cowboy victory or contemplating what could have been if we lose. Hopefully I will be tearing up the Stillwater streets with the Cowboy faithful!
Saturday, August 29th - 7.08 miles in 1:07:51 (9:35 pace)