Running for me has always been a stress reliever and a source of solace. With three little ones at home my life is rarely quiet or calm so running provides that oasis for me. I choose to run alone because I like the time to myself. Also, because I did a team race earlier this year and ended up with one of my friends not speaking to the group for weeks following the race (I guess we all have different levels competitive spirits). There have been moments when I've thought it would be wise to join a running club or to find a partner to help challenge me, but ultimately I find myself the best and cheapest company.
Today was a day when I wish I had run with someone else, or at least had someone else around to share in my accomplishment. I ran 11 miles this morning at a 8:35 pace. Nothing too spectacular but an accomplishment none the less that I wanted to shout from the roof tops. The other part of the run that was so darn fun was picking up another runner around mile 8.5 who must've thought he was tough stuff. I could tell by his gait that he was an athlete but not a long range runner. Once he spied me he made his move and whizzed past me to eat his dust! I let him maintain his lead of about 300 feet for the next mile and a half but then we hit a downhill (my favorite) and I zoomed right by. I could hear his mouth drop. I couldn't tell you how far ahead of him I made it before he slowed to a walk by once I finished my run and turned around for a quater mile walk I saw him standing still. He turned and headed back where he came from and I have no idea if he picked up his pace again or not, but I loved surprising him and kicking his butt. Oh and did I mention that this was in my last couple miles of my run compared to his fresh early miles! Score one for the girls!!
Lets hope today's high keeps me going through the next 9 days as I gear up for the big Half-Marathon. I'm putting it down here; I'll be content with a 9 minute pace but I know that I need an 8:30 or less if I'm going to have any chance of placing in my age group (even at that pace I could quickly be picked off by some more seasoned athletes but this is where the paces were last year) so I'll keep doing some speed work outs and hoping that I feel as good on the 8th as I did today.
Lace 'em up!