Monday, September 15, 2014

Something for the First Time - Long Run

This blog post was inspired by an Instagram photo I saw today after my 11 mile run.
I love Team All American's Instagram photos - very inspirational. 

When I saw the post I began thinking of the last time I did something for the first time. I love remembering my first triathlon, my first marathon, my first Ironman, my first 50K. You never forget a race distance you did for the first time.
Then I remembered that just this morning I did something for the first time: I ran a new training run course that I had been thinking about for a long time, tried doing twice but ended up cutting it short and not running it.

I had every excuse not to do the full loop I had in mind: 1) I didn’t really know how long it was 2) I wasn’t really sure if I would have enough water 3) there was no turning around once I started into the 6th mile.

I wanted to do the loop on Sunday for my prescribed long run so I could really know the distance but I got up late and wasn’t motivated to run. I waited until 7am to get out the front door and the sun was already over the mountains and temps were creeping up into the 80s. I ran 2.5 miles and decided to turn around for a disappointing 5 mile run.

However, Monday dawned and I woke up fairly early (5am). I felt guilty about my lack of long run this weekend and Duke City Marathon is in 5 weeks. I needed time on my feet.
At 6:30 I was out the door unsure of how far I would go.

This time, when I hit the point where I would continue on the loop or turn back for 3 miles (known) back home, I kept going. At mile 6 I entered the unknown.I didn't know how long or how far it would be back to my house.

At Mile 7 I ate my Gel and took this picture:

At Mile 8 I started to worry about running out of water. I had fleeting thoughts of calling my friend Kassandra to come pick me up. At Mile 8.5 I saw a Walmart and ran in to fill up my Camebak at the McDonald in the entry way. Lucky. 

At Mile 9 I was worrying that I would be late for work, not knowing how long it was going to take to get back home.

By the time I hit Mile 9.5 I knew I was at least 30 minutes away and I would do this.
It was hot, it felt like 100 degrees.
I was sweaty and gross.
At Mile 10 all my negative thoughts passed.

At Mile 11 I was done. And happy I was not dead and wouldn't be late for work.
I got it done. It was stressful, like most unknowns are. I worried a lot. I ran a bit faster than I would normally run on a long run.

I like this route, it’s primarily on the Loop in Oro Valley: paved, off the road, and shady in parts.
It was a good training day.

P.S. Running the Duke City Marathon will be my first race in New Mexico. 


  1. Spontaneous long runs are the best!

  2. Duke City will be my first marathon. I live in NM, but will be in Tucson this weekend running 12 miles of your Loop. Looking forward to it!