Distance: 6.1 mi
Dagnabit… I tried really hard to average less than 8 minutes per mile for this run. My average time? 8:00:49. Now, in my defense, this is a hilly course. One BIG one and 2 other medium sized ones really make it a challenge, but still. I think this is going to be one of my post marathon goals. To bag all of our organized Tuesday/Thursday runs in under an 8 minute pace. Yup. New goal.
My friend Kathy was there this morning. Her marathon went well. She ran 4:39:50. A great result and a time I hope I can get near for my marathon… She looked and sounded good and was actually running this morning. I didn’t quiz her about what she was going to do next, but I’m gonna. I also talked with my other friend who is running Chicago in 3 weeks. He is “done” running, as he put it. Tired, hungry, frustrated and ready to get it on. I tried to encourage him and let him know we were in the same place and that it was normal about this point. I told him that after his last long run this weekend that things would suddenly change because he would be able to see the finish line (or, in this case, the starting line) for the first time. I also encouraged him to indulge in the gloriously short mileage of his taper and have fun with it because he had earned it. His spirits seemed to lift a bit and then everybody around us chimed in with words of encouragement. Hopefully he took it to heart. That point right before your last long run is a very tough, lonely place to be. We all need as many friends and commiserators as we can get.
So like the title says, I was frustrated, but in a very good way. Being “upset” because I couldn’t quite get below 8 minute pace for 6 miles is a very strange place for me to be in. This time last year I had just topped 2.5 miles for the first time in a painful and slow 12 minute pace.
A lot of people tell me that they run because they can. Not me. I run because I couldn’t. And I will never forget that.