When I last posted, I was in "the grind", churning away those workouts, but a bit lost, as I was too far away from my race to feel the urgency, but close enough to know that every workout mattered. Well I'm happy to say that I believe I am on my way toward exiting that feeling. Some days, it really does feel tough to get out there. Others, I'm hitting the pavement without thinking. So how did I get there?
First, I've had a few runs that went extremely well, giving me the confidence I needed to know I'm moving in the right direction. Second, the weather appears to be finally cooling off a bit, renewing my sense of enjoyment in being out in nature. Its no surprise that these two things go hand in hand. This is now the time to start reaping the reward for plowing through sweaty, humid miles all summer. Our bodies have become efficient at dealing with the heat and humidity, so cooler weather brings more efficiency at the same paces or faster paces at the same effort, both of which are huge benefits.
With a quick shot of cooler weather last weekend (of course, immediately followed by extreme heat, but I digress), I set out with some running buddies for a 22 miler. Now these weren't just any running buddies. They were some runners I admire for many reasons, the least of which for the fact that they are fast by anyone's definition. They are all real people with real lives, and can make any long run feel like a short jog around the block. This was just what I needed with a tough 22 miler planned.
|Meghan, Jeff, and Jess (they were too cool for me and took a photo of themselves later)|
|Probably one of my best long runs ever|